Marvin Lewis and Mike Brown made it official on Tuesday. Lewis will be the head coach of the Bengals for at least two more years. All that is left to wonder is what will change from these past few years?
Well the idea that this will be a similar change to when the Bengals essentially cleaned house at the coordinator positions doesn’t seem like it will be happening. Well Paul Guenther will at least have a choice to return.
According to Geoff Hobson of the Bengals official site, Guenther will meet with Brown and decide whether he wants to return next season. He reportedly has also been offered to become the defensive coordinator under Jon Gruden in Oakland.
Guenther did a great job with what he had. He utilized young guys who look like they will be huge parts of the Bengals’ future. He also did it while dealing with an offense that couldn’t score points or even get first downs.
Apparently Lewis was also a big fan of how Bill Lazor ran the show after taking over as offensive coordinator following the team’s Week 2 loss to Houston. Lewis praised Lazor for the job he did in 2017, but he was clear changes will be coming to the offense that ranked 32nd in the NFL last season.
“He’s very comfortable with how I see it,” Lewis said of Lazor, although he didn’t announce he was the guy. “We basically wasted the 2,000 snaps of OTAs and training camp because it was through another man’s eyes. When Bill took over, Bill was able to try and work through things that had been already done without trying to slow our players down. He tried to work in the constraints of the way things were and the things that had been installed.”
“Up front and we have to improve the play of our quarterback and get him back to being comfortable and get him back to be the Andy Dalton we know day in and day out.”
It is true. It is hard to pick up an offense that was designed and put in place by someone else and try and run it better than they did. It could be that Lazor’s spin on this offense could be more like the first drives of the game, and less like when the Bengals got off script. It looks like we will be forced to find out as the team has decided to Bring back Bill Lazor.
Darrin Simmons is also safe, which isn’t surprising at all. He is the only special teams coordinator that Marvin Lewis has ever had, and the special teams weren’t bad enough to can him.
Overall this seems like they are trying to run back the same coordinators, but they may be finding new assistant coaches to fill in under them as no one is still under contract.
The fact Lewis is putting the blame on the coaches is refreshing, but the fact he doesn’t give a real concrete sense of change is worrisome. It feels like this team is content to try and roll at the same thing they did last year with some minor tweaks. I’m not sure what minor tweaks are going to make them competitive with the Steelers or help stop the team from giving up huge first half leads in the Second half.
All we have as fans right now is hope that somehow this ends up different than last year. Maybe changes are coming to the teams’ approach on free agency, or maybe they will actually play their talented young players. Something has to really change though if this team wants to get over the mediocre hump it has built its house on.