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Clayton's QB rankings: Dalton at No. 19

8/29/2013

In the latest quarterback rankings by ESPN's John Clayton, Cincinnati Bengals quarterback Andy Dalton comes in at No. 19.

No one should have a major problem with where Dalton is ranked, although I would've put him one spot ahead of Kansas City's Alex Smith. Dalton was also No. 19 in Ron Jaworski's quarterback rankings, so there is a growing consensus here.

This is what Clayton had to say about Dalton, who is put in the "Chad Pennington Division" of quarterbacks:

Dalton is much like Pennington, the former Jets quarterback who made trips to the playoffs when the talent around him was good. The Bengals are loaded at wide receiver and tight end. They have made two trips to the playoffs with Dalton behind center. His next mission is to win a playoff game or two. Offensive coordinator Jay Gruden is working to improve Dalton's deep accuracy.

Dalton is never going to wow anyone with his arm strength or mobility. So, what the Bengals have done the past two years -- in adding more playmakers to the offense -- will help him on the field but hurt him off of it. If Dalton raises his game this year, many will point to a rising, young supporting cast of A.J. Green, Tyler Eifert and Giovani Bernard as the reason why. Unless Dalton wins a Super Bowl like Joe Flacco, I think it's going to be difficult for him to ever surpass the likes of Andrew Luck, Robert Griffin III, Colin Kaepernick, Russell Wilson and Cam Newton on these quarterback rankings.