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Flying Pigskin Podcast: Who’s next?

With Marvin Lewis on the way out, who will the Bengals replace him with?

NFL: Cincinnati Bengals at Minnesota Vikings Brad Rempel-USA TODAY Sports

Now that the world (with the possible exception of Marvin Lewis) knows that Marvin Lewis will not return as the head coach of the Cincinnati Bengals next year, the big question is who will be the new coach who tries to return the Bengals to prominence?

This was the main topic in this week’s version of The Flying Pigskin podcast, which was hosted by Ken Broo, who was standing in for Tanya O’Rourke, and featured panellist Scott Kyser along Mo Egger, the host of Sports Talk on 1530 AM. I was also back for this last broadcast before the Christmas holidays.

You can listen to this week’s show at any time, and be sure to tune in to get all of the latest news and commentary on your Cincinnati Bengals.

Lewis’ decision to leave may have come as a surprise to many, but it is something that should have not only been anticipated but headed off. The speculation has been running rampant for months, and it probably would be better for the team to show Lewis the door early.

But the scary part is whether the team will look internally and replace Lewis with another known commodity such as Paul Guenther or Darrin Simmons. If they do, don’t expect the fan base to get behind the choice. Attendance has already the lowest in the league and the only way that is going to improve is to bring in someone who can generate some excitement.

The Hue Jackson option might be an interesting one, but he would not be much of a departure from Lewis. And, are you going to give up draft picks within your own division for someone who has won only one game in two years?

Whoever ends up coaching the Bengals next year, the consensus is that Lewis’ time is up. The team is better off for what he has done, but it is time for him to go. He will leave behind a legacy of an inability to win playoff games (Lewis set an NFL record for playoff futility at 0-7) and an inability to control his players off the field. But he was able to change the culture of the Bengals, who are no longer the laughingstock of the NFL.

Whoever it is will need to put his stamp on the team and make sure that his side of the ball, be it offense or defense, is taken care of. He has to be someone who can establish what he is good at and make sure that the other team cannot take it away.

And the draft has to start paying dividends. You have to be able to identify guys who can step in and contribute right away. And all positions should be subject to competition, including Andy Dalton’s quarterback spot. With a record of 5-9 and staring at a 5-11 finish, why would anything be off the table?

Please join us on Twitter @flying_pigskin. Last week, we posed the question whether fans would rather see the Bengals lose so they were better positioned for the draft or continue to play to win, and it was not even close. Seventy-two percent of you chose the higher draft choice.

You can also tweet Keenan directly @CKJMSingleton, or contact Tonya @TonyaORourke. Scott can be reached @ScottyK_junior and Mo is @MoEgger1530. In addition, you can call in and leave a voicemail at 513-449-0716.

Be sure to tune in to The Flying Pigskin podcast this week and every week. You can find us anywhere podcasts are available, or go to Stitcher or Google Play. The show airs live every Monday afternoon for the rest of the season, with the exception of Christmas Day. Who Dey! Who Dey All Day!