The Cincinnati Bengals announced they have released veteran quarterback Andy Dalton after nine years with the team.  The move was expected with Dalton entering the final year of his contract, as well as the Bengals drafting LSU quarterback Joe Burrow as their No. 1 overall pick in this year’s draft.

After being drafted in the second round of the 2011 draft, Dalton led the Bengals to the playoffs in his first five seasons in Cincinnati. “Andy will always be considered a key member of the Bengals’ organization,” said Bengals head coach Zac Taylor. “His teammates and coaches appreciate his leadership and his commitment to winning. Just as importantly, Andy and his wife JJ are leaving a lasting impact in the community with the incredible work their foundation has done over the years. Andy and his family have meant a lot to this team and this city, and we wish them the best in the future.”

“Andy will always hold a special place with this franchise, and I know that he holds a special place in my heart,” said team president Mike Brown. “This is a hard day for our club because we know and appreciate what a consummate professional Andy has always been. We respect and appreciate Andy, and we thank him.”

Bengals release QB Dalton after nine-year run