In Marvin Lewis’ 16 years as the Bengals head coach, there have been many ebbs and flows to his teams’ performances. While the stigma of a staggering lack of postseason success is one of the bullet points on his resume, so is his ability to raise teams seemingly from the ashes and inspire a postseason berth.
Aside from the 8-8 finish from the 2003 squad, the revitalization of the team in 2009 and 2011 remain some of the more impressive performances by Cincinnati under Lewis. After two straight losing seasons that followed five consecutive playoff berths, the Bengals are hoping for a major rebound this season.
In some facets, it would seem as if the team is prepped for a bounce-back year. We recently gave a status report on the club and even though the arrow seems to be pointing up, national perception seems to continually be low on the club in 2018.
A recent power rankings list made by CBS Sports’ Pete Prisco had the team coming in at No. 26, ESPN’s had the Bengals at 29, while recent Las Vegas odds have the Bengals at 35/1 to win the AFC. In case you were wondering, it’s a tie with Cleveland as the fourth-lowest mark in the conference.
For some reason, the perception outside of Cincinnati is much more gloomy than we tend to see things.
But, for those who have been around these parts a while, these sentiments have come the Bengals’ way before. In 2009, the team was attempting to get past an injury-riddled 2008 campaign and many wondered about the future of Carson Palmer. What ensued was a 10-win season, including a clean sweep of the AFC North.
Then in 2011, thanks to more questions with Palmer and the club (namely, his quitting on the team), some pundits had the team going 0-16 that year. Instead, Andy Dalton and A.J. Green led the Bengals to nine wins and a postseason berth.
For many fans and the players, it’s better to be surrounded with low expectations and greatly surpass them. Still, after netting two straight draft classes who seem to be loaded with players who can help the team on a number of levels, along with some savvy veteran additions, it’s odd that Cincinnati is getting so little national respect.
How are you feeling about a possible Bengals recovery this year? Do you have confidence the team will do what they did in 2009 and 2011 and if so, is that confidence level higher than that you had at those times?
Are you more confident in a Bengals 2018 turnaround than you were in 2009 and/or 2011?
This poll is closed
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