If you look into things, then you get the impression that Marvin Lewis had zero influence whether the Bengals signed Chris Henry or not.
"The owner has the final say," Lewis said. "Mike has wanted to give Chris this opportunity and asked we do the best job we can to prepare him and get him ready to play. That's what he asked me to do, and that's what we're going to do."
As much as we had hoped that Lewis would have more influence on player acquisitions, crashing back to Earth is the realization that the Brown family own and run this team from top to Lewis. Marvin is the head coach, nothing more. This is Mike Brown's team and it's discretion to do what he pleases. And there's a reason we question everything he does; most of the time his choices fail miserably.
A couple of things here regarding Henry. I understand and applaud those that talk about the team's integrity and being forced to wonder if Henry will be arrested on any given night, before any given Sunday. The jokes will return, the confusion and head shaking grows with intensity. On the other hand, you can't argue Henry's physical talents. When he played, he's the most lethal and productive third wide receiver on any team right now. And if there's reasons why Chad Johnson and T.J. Houshmandzadeh can't go, the Bengals are lucky to have a talented guy like Henry step into the void and limit any production degradation.
I realize the topic is like a double-edged sword. On one hand, then the other. The reality is that he's here, getting in shape, mending with teammates and, hopefully, applying the lessons that he learned being flat broke.
Lastly, there's a point going around that I don't much care for. Some are calling others hypocrites, saying that the same people against Henry returning, will be the same people cheering at Paul Brown Stadium when scores a touchdown. It's almost ridiculous to point that out simply because you're cheering for the Cincinnati Bengals scoring a touchdown, taking the lead, winning with a fourth quarter drive. You're fans of the Cincinnati Bengals winning, with or without Henry. So I say to those that are against Henry returning, rant all you want, and cheer loudly when he scores. It's Carson Palmer throwing the touchdown, Levi Jones protecting the quarterbacks blind side, Kenny Watson picking up the linebacker blitz, Chad Johnson commanding double-teams and T.J. Houshmandzadeh owning the underneath routes. It's the Bengals scoring, not just Henry.
With all that said, it's time we move on now.
Players react to Henry's return [Curnutte's blog]