Bengals claim John Skelton off waivers

April, 3, 2013
4/03/13
6:30
PM ET
The dominoes for pedestrian quarterbacks continued to fall Wednesday, when the Cincinnati Bengals claimed John Skelton off waivers. Skelton was pushed out of Arizona after the Cardinals traded for former Bengals quarterback Carson Palmer.

The Bengals have gotten younger at the backup quarterback position, but not necessarily better. For the past two seasons, the Bengals went with Bruce Gradkowski, a 30-year-old quarterback who led Cincinnati to a come-from-behind victory two years ago in limited action. Now, the competition to be the backup to Andy Dalton is between two quarterbacks in their mid-20s -- Skelton and Josh Johnson -- who have a combined 8-14 record as starters.

Skelton, 25, went 8-9 as a starter for the Cardinals, including a 1-5 record last season. A fifth-round pick in 2010, Skelton has thrown 15 touchdowns and 25 interceptions in his career.

Johnson, 26, has never won in five career starts for the Buccaneers. He has thrown five touchdowns and 10 interceptions in his 27-game career.

“We’re glad to add John to cultivate a competitive situation behind Andy Dalton,” Bengals coach Marvin Lewis said. “He’s a young player, but he has had valuable experience starting and leading a team in the NFL.”

Jamison Hensley

ESPN Ravens reporter

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