That sting we feel in the back of our necks

Is what fans of ELITE teams feel when their team loses in the playoffs.

We’re not settling for being happy with a winning record. (We would have been ecstatic for that. I remember the “In Marvin We Trust” hoopla when he had us 8-8 two years in a row).

We’re not settling for being happy to make the playoffs. Last year, we were.

We’re only settling for WINNING in the playoffs. That’s what fans of ELITE teams demand.

That sting we feel in the back of our necks…. Like Marcellus Wallace said… That’s pride fucking with us.

Congratulations to EACH AND EVERY MEMBER of Bengaldom. From those who suffered through the 90's and are still with the team today. To those folks who considered themselves part of the "Who Dey Revolution" when they maintained their fan status by ripping the team unlike any rival could (and still do).

At one point, we were the laughing stock of the football world. I'm not talking about the team. WE, THE FANS, were. I remember the days when a group of guys would get together and we'd play the usual get to know you shit-shooting. We'd all say who our favorite team was, and then everyone would talk trash about the team. Then it'd come around to me and I'd confess to being a Bengals fan. No trash talk would come, instead guys would shrug, hang their heads, and offer words of sympathy. It's not like that anymore.

Ok... So the team is stuck in mediocrity. Our HC is in the lower third of ability among head coaches, our OC is questionable, and we're waiting with baited breath to see if our one bright spot is leaving for a head coaches job. Our QB is an average quarterback, along the same level as a Mark Sanchez. When the team is ranked in the teens in the power rankings, we're right where we should be for that season. Hell, boys.... That's still a hell of a turnaround since the days of the revolving door of QB's and HC's.

So.... We've upped our standards. We have clawed and kicked our way out of the overflowing shithouse septic tank of low expectations. Gone are the days when we had nothing to look forward to, except a hope that we would at least look respectable on the field. Gone are the days when we'd attend games with grocery bags on our heads as NORMAL team gear. Gone are the days when we didn't even bat an eyelash when someone talked about us as the "Bungles," or mentioning the arrests our players had. Right now, the Bengals are a middle-of-the-road NFL team. Give us the current state of the franchise 10-15 years ago, and we'd be crying tears of joy. It's been a hell of a long road.

But the kicker... The REAL thing that brings a smile to my face in the face of this loss today.... Is that we're not happy. The sting of pride hurts. We're hungry. We Bengals fans are NOT happy for mediocrity. We want that next step. And when training camp opens next summer, we'll be FULLY EXPECTING a playoff run. Not just HOPING for a good season.

Marcellus Wallace said "fuck pride." No, baby.... That sting feels good. It reminds us that we're still alive, and that we are fans of an NFL franchise, and that we have high fucking expectations for that franchise. One and done? Hell no. We're just getting this shit started.


This is a FanPost and does not necessarily reflect the views of Cincy Jungle's writers or editors. It does reflect the views of this particular fan though, which is as important as the views of Cincy Jungle's writers or editors.

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