Believe it or not, Andy Dalton has been unfairly maligned.

After Week 12 of the NFL season, quarterback Andy Dalton is the highest-ranked player on the Saints’ offense, according to Pro Football Focus. But his quality play doesn’t stop there. Dalton also possesses the fifth-highest passing grade out of every quarterback across the NFL.

How Andy Dalton has realistically played

Pro Football Focus grades every snap in every game and rewards passers who avoid turnover-worthy throws and sacks, which is what the Saints have asked of Dalton since he took over for Jameis Winston.

New Orleans’ own in-house grading probably doesn’t view Dalton anywhere near this favorably. Dalton himself likely wouldn’t agree with such a grand review of his performance. Nonetheless, he finds himself leading the Saints’ pack of offensive players.

Dalton’s counting stats for the season aren’t that impressive either. He sits 24th in the NFL in passing yards (2,023), fifteenth in touchdowns (15), and 18th in interceptions (seven).

Arguably, Dalton’s best game of the season came when the Saints beat the hapless LA Rams in November. He passed for 260 yards, collecting three touchdowns in the process. His longest pass went for 53 yards, creating the highlight of his season thus far.

It seems outlandish that Dalton would have a ridiculously high PFF grade, but he does. Now, it is time to see whether that grade leads to consistent wins. If one is to judge based on history, the answer is probably no.

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Feature image via Cary Edmondson-USA TODAY Sports

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