Saints Preparing to Start Andy Dalton at QB for the Vikings Game

Andy Dalton (14) with Cincinnati Bengals in 2017
Andy Dalton (14) with Cincinnati Bengals in 2017. Photo by Adam Lacy/CSM/REX/Shutterstock (9305816df)

Veteran Andy Dalton might get a surprising chance to start for the New Orleans Saints this week. With Week 1 starter Jameis Winston struggling with back and ankle issues, it appears that the Saints are leaning towards having Dalton under center for Sunday’s game against the Minnesota Vikings.

Speaking with reporters, the Saints’ head coach Dennis Allen said that Winston playing against the Vikings is doubtful, as he has not practiced all week.

“So our plan right now is to have Andy ready to go,” Allen said. “We’ll see how things go overnight, but Andy will be ready to go if that’s the direction that we go.”

This would be Andy Dalton’s debut appearance in the Saints’ uniform. The 34-year-old inked a one-year deal with the franchise in the offseason after starting six games and going 3-3 with the Chicago Bears in 2021.

Dalton was previously a starter for the Cincinnati Bengals between 2011 and 2019 and spent one season with the Dallas Cowboys as well. He has 35,279 career passing yards and 226 touchdowns.

While Winston could still end up playing on Sunday, Allen confirmed that wideout Michael Thomas would definitely be out against the Vikings with a foot injury. Thomas previously missed the whole of 2021 while recovering from foot surgery before making a comeback in 2022. He has 16 catches for 171 yards and three touchdowns so far.