Lewis: Bengals Need to be Proactive About Quarterback Position

Cincinnati Bengals head coach Marvin Lewis, and the Bengals in general, are in a pickle; the franchise quarterback, Carson Palmer, wants out (can you really blame him?) and the NFL is in the middle of a lockout, preventing the team from finding a suitable, albeit temporary, replacement.

While Mike Brown somehow believes that the best solution is to call Palmer's bluff, hoping that No. 9 is still under center when the 2011 season starts, we know that won't work. Palmer's done -- you know it, I know it and Lewis knows it. That's why Lewis believes that the best way to move forward, when it comes to the position of quarterback, is to be proactive.

"It’s going to be important not to spin our wheels worrying about it and being paralyzed by it but to be proactive."

The Cincinnati Enquirer's Joe Reedy wrote that Lewis was asked if there was a point last season in which he felt that Palmer's frustrations approached a boiling point.

"He stuck to that mantra the entire way through," Lewis said. "Guys get to points for different reasons. The fans shouldn’t worry about that. If he doesn’t want to do this then this is what we have to do. This is a 24/7 deal for all of us.

"A lot of things affect people all the time but the thing about it is there’s a great opportunity ahead and we’re going to seize the moment. One guy spoke with the owner of the football team and he was told where his stand is. Carson knew where things are going to be."

Reedy also mentioned that Lewis knows that, without Palmer, his options at quarterback are slim. Jordan Palmer and Dan LeFevour are on the roster but Lewis believes that they would need to draft a new quarterback for their future, sign a free agent or possibly, and maybe ideally, both.

However, Lewis also knows that they need to be smart when it comes to who they draft to fill the quarterback position, if they decide that's the best route to take, of course. Blaine Gabbert and Cam Newton may be the top two quarterbacks on most draft boards but that doesn't mean either of them are safe picks when you're drafting fourth overall.

"I believe we have to get the right value at that pick. If it’s a quarterback or another player," Lewis said. "We’re going to do our due diligence because right now because we’re going to take one of the first four players to come off the board."

The draft begins in late April and, as of right now, if you asked 10 different people who the Bengals should select with the No. 4 overall pick, you'll probably get 10 different answers. They need a new quarterback moving forward, but are there any good enough to justify a No. 4 pick? They need a new No. 1 receiver but is it really smart to draft a receiver that high in the draft? They could use some help on the defensive line, inside and on the end, but can you pass up some players who could boost a struggling offense for the "safe" pick?

Things are going to get interesting.

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