Dave briefly mentioned this on Friday and thought it deserved its own bedroom. Fox Sports' Alex Marvez caught up with Jay Gruden last week, hard at work while players remain locked out of the stadium. During the interview, Gruden admits that he was "absolutely kind of surprised" to become the Bengals choice as the new offensive coordinator after the team fired Bob Bratkowski, who ran an offense that failed to break inside the top-20 for three straight seasons.
“I originally thought that from my background I would have to come in (to the NFL) as a position coach,” said Gruden, a Tampa Bay Buccaneers offensive assistant from 2002-08 while splitting time as an Arena Football League head coach and quarterback.
“I’m confident that I’m ready, but I didn’t think anybody else thought that.”
Gruden wasn't the only one. We have to admit to a certain level of suspicion. First of all, name recognition (ala Don and David Shula). Mike Brown hired the latter and the Bengals went 19-52 with Shula as the head coach. So there's a slight residue when it comes to hiring coaches with famous last names. Then there's the fact that Jay Gruden has been out of the NFL since 2008, when his brother Jon was fired as the Tampa Bay Buccaneers head coach.
True. While we're strongly positive about what we can hope for in Gruden -- mostly because Gruden isn't frigging Bob Bratkowski -- there's a lot of uncertainty with this offense right now. In a sense, that's a good thing because we're washing away the old and polishing the new. I guess we'll just have to see how this all turns out.