Increasingly likely that they'll lose defensive coordinator Mike Zimmer to the Miami Dolphins (or the Tampa Bay Buccaneers), the Cincinnati Bengals will have the sudden task with finding his replacement. Though it would seem historically accurate that the Bengals were once a reactive team, there's reasons to believe that Cincinnati has already developed a game-plan for what seems will become an eventuality.
Two names that continue to be circulated as the favorites are Bengals defensive backs coach Kevin Coyle and former Jacksonville Jaguars head coach Jack Del Rio. Joe Reedy of the Cincinnati Enquirer initially projected both names, largely due to their connections to the team and Lewis himself.
Coyle has been an assistant coach with the Bengals for 11 seasons bringing some defensive coordinator experience at Fresno State, Maryland, Syracuse and Holy Cross. Del Rio was once a former defensive assistant under defensive coordinator Marvin Lewis on the Baltimore Ravens coaching staff. Del Rio's name has been mentioned several times as a favorite to replace Brian VanGorder in Atlanta.
That being said we won't know the full scope of whom Cincinnati could be considering until Zimmer leaves Cincinnati for the long-expected head coaching job we knew he'd one day have.
However no matter who it is, we figure it'll be the coach that Marvin Lewis wants, thanks to his negotiation last January that we suspect gave him increasing authority over his own coaching staff. And hopefully that coach is an aggressive play-caller, taking advantage of Cincinnati's quality defensive front.