The Bengals have a preferred replacement for Marvin Lewis at head coach, and it’s Rams’ quarterbacks coach Zac Taylor.
Upon firing Lewis two Mondays ago, Taylor was the first external candidate the Bengals requested to interview. The interview took place last Friday in Los Angeles and was the fifth interview the team conducted in their search.
At just 35 years of age, Taylor was the youngest candidate the Bengals interviewed. 2018 was Taylor’s 11th season in the coaching ranks, after starting as a graduate assistant with Texas A&M in 2008. Taylor stayed there up until he become the Dolphins’ assistant quarterbacks coach in 2012 when the team drafted Ryan Tannehill. He was then promoted to quarterbacks coach in 2013. In 2015, Taylor took over play-calling duties for the Dolphins in their final five games when they fired offensive coordinator Bill Lazor.
Taylor returned to the college stage to be the University of Cincinnati’s offensive coordinator. After a relatively unsuccessful season there, he was hired by new Rams’ coach Sean McVay to be their wide receivers coach in 2017. His role then changed to quarterbacks coach in 2018 after Matt Lafleur left the position to become the Titans’ offensive coordinator.
In short, the Bengals are planning to replace a known commodity in Marvin Lewis with a relatively inexperienced offensive-minded coach who spent the last two seasons working with one of the league’s brightest minds. Taylor is about as different as Bengals’ fans could’ve asked for to begin the post-Lewis era, but there’s still a risk that he doesn’t live up to the potential he has as a young leader.
Many fans wanted Chiefs’ offensive coordinator Eric Bieniemy to be offered the job, but Taylor must’ve nailed the interview, which fits the initial reports.
Also, Taylor can’t be officially announced as the team’s head coach until the Rams’ season is over. Considering what happened last year with the Colts and Josh McDaniels, we can’t rule out the possibility that Taylor could opt to return to Los Angeles like McDaniels returned to New England. But for the sake of our sanity, let’s assume that won’t happen.
Are the Bengals making the right choice in hiring Taylor?
Is Zac Taylor the right hire for the Bengals?
This poll is closed
Yes, he’s what they need
No, I preferred another candidate
Anyone but Hue