The Bengals’ free agency decisions have many fans wondering what’s going on in Cincinnati and how the club plans to remain competitive in 2017. These thoughts come after watching Andrew Whitworth and Kevin Zeitler leave the Bengals to join the Los Angeles Rams and Cleveland Browns respectively in the last week. And then also seeing Domata Peko, Karlos Dansby, Margus Hunt and most recently Rex Burkhead sign elsewhere, too.
After news broke of the Bengals’ best two offensive lineman leaving, running back Giovani Bernard sent out this Tweet, seemingly indicating his concern.
— Giovani Bernard (@G_Bernard25) March 9, 2017
Then, when Burkhead was allowed to leave for the Patriots, defensive end Carlos Dunlap sent out this Tweet, making it known that he doesn’t quite understand what the Bengals are doing. He received hundreds of Tweets back from concerned fans. It’s pretty troubling to see a player on the team’s current roster, someone who’s growing into a team leader, sharing something like this publically. You never want to see someone like Dunlap making it clear that he’s concerned about his own team.
I don't see the plan but guess that's not my role to either.— Carlos Dunlap (@Carlos_Dunlap) March 14, 2017
Linebacker Marquis Flowers also shared this Tweet saying “Lord knows I’m biting my tongue”. It’s unclear if his Tweet is in regards to the Bengals, but, you’d figure it is. As a backup player and someone likely on the roster bubble for 2017, I’m not really understanding why he’d speak out on the topic. He often sends questionable Tweets though, so, I’d take this one with a grain of salt.
Lord Knows I'm biting my tongue— Marquis Flowers (@MrHitThat_53) March 15, 2017
And then, as if that all wasn’t enough, Adam Jones posted a positive message on social media in regards to Andre Smith returning to the Bengals. While Smith was in Cincinnati, he shared the number that Willie Anderson wore during his Bengals career. Anderson opted to comment on Jones’ post and wrote, “Would be nice it that number would get retired though. Oh well! We all know how it is!”
He’s talking about how the Bengals refuse to honor their former players and have retired only one jersey number in the team’s history. That number is 54, that of the first ever Bengals player, Bob Johnson, who was drafted by the team in its inaugural season.
The Bengals’ refusal to honor their past players has been a big gripe that both fans and former players have with Mike Brown and the Bengals’ organization. It makes no sense and it needs to end. Why would you want to make your former players, Bengals greats, feel this way?
It seems like Bengals past and present are taking jabs at the team with ease. Hopefully, the Bengals start changing their ways to prevent this type of public backlash going forward. It’s certainly not a good look for the team.