clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

Marvin Lewis wants contract extension from Bengals

We all want things we don’t deserve and Lewis wants another extension with the Bengals.

Baltimore Ravens v Cincinnati Bengals Photo by Michael Hickey/Getty Images

Despite rumors of retirement and hot-seat talk, Marvin Lewis will be back as the Bengals’ head coach for the 2017 NFL season.

Beyond that, Lewis sounds like a guy who wants to be head coach of the Bengals for far longer than just this year. In an interview with the Cincinnati Enquirer, Lewis stressed his desire for a contract extension at some point, mostly so it keeps everyone in the organization at ease and not worrying about coach and player statuses in 2018.

“We’d like to agree to something at some point,” Lewis said about a desire to receive a contract extension. “It puts, I think, everybody’s mind at ease going forward for their futures. A lot of the people in the building, it makes it easier on them.”

Even though Lewis doesn’t deserve an extension after 14 years and zero playoff wins, you can’t fault him for wanting one, both for the sake of himself and his staff. No one wants to be a lame-duck coach, but it’s hard to look at Lewis as anything else if he coaches 2017 without an extension for at least 2018.

And let’s face it: Lewis has been the guiding force behind building the Bengals into the team that made it to the playoffs in five straight years, and he wants to see through that this franchise continues that drive toward a Super Bowl.

“There’s only one team that gets it as successful as they want it to be,” Lewis said. “Everyone goes through the similar process. The overall thing, the goal is to be world champions. Only one group gets to do that.”

One of the biggest frustrations of Bengals fans during Lewis’ tenure has been his reluctance to play young guys, especially when they clearly deserve it. Guys like Tyler Boyd, Cody Core, Rex Burkhead, and others deserved to play more early on this season. That’s been a recurring issue year after year.

Even Lewis seemed to recognize that and stressed his desire for his staff to get young guys more ready to make an impact early in a season, not later when the season is already lost.

“My vision would be to get more earlier out of guys like Tyler Boyd, to be successful,” Lewis said. “Sometimes it’s on the player, sometimes it’s on us as coaches. But at the end of the process, but if we can get more out of them so that we get it done earlier. Then maybe at some point in his development, the light comes on in week two or three or week four or five.”

Speaking of young guys, the Bengals will have plenty of those next year with as many as 11 draft picks after compensatory selections are awarded. Unless Lewis can swing some trades, he’s going to have a lot of drafted rookies to work with this offseason, so maybe that’s why he hopes to be here beyond 2017 to see through to their development.

“That’s a lot to absorb,” Lewis said. “You never know what happens through injury and things that occur. You don’t know what’s going to occur. But I think at the end of the day, just sitting here now, that’s a lot to be able to digest, 11 draft picks. That’s a lot of change, a lot of young guys. But you never know what happens. We’ll see. There’s a long time before that.”

Regardless of how many new players the Bengals have or how many years left Lewis has on his deal when the 2017 opens, his team needs to show significant improvement for him to be back in 2018. Since it’s clear Mike Brown doesn’t want to have to fire Lewis, making him a lame-duck coach really wouldn’t be the worst thing heading into this season, maybe it will even make everyone try a bit harder.