The Bengals head coaching “search” is still “on-going” as of this moment, but while they wait on Zac Taylor — who remains employed with the Los Angeles Rams — the Bengals are legitimately without an offensive and defensive coordinator. Along with the Dolphins, who also “don’t” have a head coach, they are the only teams in the NFL with actual vacancies at each of those spots.
After Cincinnati terminated the contract of Bill Lazor and let Hue Jackson go as well, their vacancy at offensive coordinator is as real as the one they have at defensive coordinator. Reports have surfaced regarding potential candidates for each job, and many of those candidates have accepted the same offer from other teams. Let’s go through those candidates and where the ended up.
Along with being a candidate for the head coaching spot, Vance Joseph was also a possibility to become the Bengals’ defensive coordinator. That ended when he accepted the same job for the Arizona Cardinals after also interviewing with the Cleveland Browns for their vacancy at that spot.
Speaking of the Browns, they’ve officially filled their staff under new head coach Freddie Kitchens. Todd Monken was announced as his offensive coordinator, and Steve Wilks as his defensive coordinator. Monken was interviewed to become the Bengals’ next head coach but had much more intrigue from other teams at the prospect of becoming their offensive coordinator. The Green Bay Packers and the New York Jets interviewed Monken for their head coaching as well, but he ultimately chose the team that the Bengals happen to play twice a year.
The Jets hired Gregg Williams, the coach Kitchens replaced in Cleveland, as their new defensive coordinator — officially taking him out of the Bengals search if he was even a part of it. That search remains wide open as we haven’t heard about any available candidates being courted by Cincinnati.
Turning back to offensive coordinator, the Bengals were denied permission to interview Gary Kubiak by the Broncos last week. Just a couple days later, it was reported that Kubiak was going to split with Denver, giving the Bengals a chance to bring him in for an interview. Kubiak ultimately left the Broncos, but then joined Mike Zimmer’s staff in Minnesota as an offensive advisor, taking him off the market.
Aside from Kubiak, the other reported candidate for the Bengals’ offensive coordinator job is Darrell Bevell. Bevell remains free for an interview, but the Bengals have not officially reached out.
When Taylor is officially announced as the Bengals’ next head coach, we’re going to find out which assistants were chosen by him shortly afterwords. As of right now, the options are fairly slim as most of the other teams have their staffs at least partially filled out, but Taylor and the Bengals seem to have a plan. We’ll find out what it is soon enough.