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The 5 best candidates to become the Bengals’ new head coach

We take a look at five of the best head coach candidates to be the Bengals new head coach

5 best candidates to be the Bengals new head coach


Looks like it may very well be an offensive-minded coach outside of the organization.

16 years is a long time in the NFL. It’s how long the Bengals kept Marvin Lewis as their head coach without a single playoff win in his tenure. There are probably a lot of Bengals fans that don’t remember watching the Bengals before Marvin Lewis was the team’s head coach, but that distinction no longer belongs to him.

Now with Lewis and Cincinnati finally parting ways, the team is looking for their 10th coach in franchise history. They’ve interview more than a handful of candidates thus far in their search, so let’s take this opportunity to look at five of the best candidates for the job.

1. Todd Monken

Monken is one of the more interesting candidates considering he has actual play-calling experience, whereas a number of others the team has showed interest do not. He’s spent the last three seasons calling the plays for the Buccaneers and their 2018 offense was one of the best in the NFL; and that was with quarterbacks Jameis Winston and Ryan Fitzpatrick airing the ball out and throwing tons of interceptions.

Similar to the Bengals, the Buccaneers had offensive line struggles but were still able to have an explosive passing offense. On top of that, the Buccaneers’ offense was well designed to feature all three of their receivers, including the player that John Ross was compared to coming out of college in DeSean Jackson. Monken’s résumé speaks loud and clear to what the Bengals need.

2. Eric Bieniemy

The Chiefs’ offensive coordinator from this past season is a hot name in the head coaching circuit this offseason. The Andy Reid coaching tree has been looking successful with Matt Nagy immediately taking the Bears to the playoffs and Doug Pederson winning the last Super Bowl, so many believe Bieniemy is more than deserving of a chance to make his mark with another team.

The Chiefs had a fantastic offense in 2018 with second year player Patrick Mahomes and a bevy of weapons. The biggest difference between Bieniemy and Monken is that Bieniemy doesn’t have play-calling experience with the Chiefs since Andy Reid called the plays.

3. Zac Taylor

Every team is looking for the next Sean McVay after his success with the Rams the last two seasons, and there is no better place to look than the source.

Taylor has garnered some interest this past week as a head coaching candidate for a few teams after spending time as the quarterback coach with the Rams this past season. Like Bieniemy, his inexperience as a play-caller is questionable, but he at least has some to his name after taking over for Bill Lazor as the Dolphins offensive coordinator in the final five games of the 2015 season.

Though he may be green like his head coach once was, Taylor has overseen the development of quarterback Jared Goff and it may be possible he can help Andy Dalton and the whole Bengals offense.

4. Kris Richard

The Bengals seem much more interested in offensive-minded candidates this time around compared to their search that ended up with the hiring of Lewis. However, that doesn’t mean that they shouldn’t be considering defensive coaches as well. Richard is one of the better ones this year.

Coming from the Pete Carroll tree — which hasn’t seen much success outside of Dan Quinn in Atlanta — Richard is currently the Cowboys’ defensive backs coach. Before this season, Richard was Carroll’s defensive coordinator for the three seasons following Quinn’s departure and was let go from the position last offseason. After bouncing back with a solid season in Dallas Richard would likely be able to better maximize the talent of the players on the defense and would make improving it a top priority.

5. Chris Petersen

The Bengals have not interviewed or been linked to any college coaches yet, which is something that should and could change by the time they make the hire.

Although it has been rumored that Petersen doesn’t want to leave the University of Washington, the Bengals should at least reach out to him and see if they can entice him to take the leap into the pros. With the disparity in recruiting classes between the Pac-12 and other major conferences, he will likely have trouble ever competing with the perennial powerhouses in college football. However, he has shown his coaching talent by staying competitive for his entire career there and staying competitive against teams that are more talented.

Whoever becomes Cincinnati’s next head coach, we need to see him make a conscious effort to improve the culture and erase the narratives that have plagued the franchise for far too long. Any one of these candidates is capable of doing that.


Which of these candidates is your favorite to become the Bengals’ next head coach?

This poll is closed

  • 30%
    Todd Monken
    (1353 votes)
  • 43%
    Eric Bieniemy
    (1900 votes)
  • 14%
    Zac Taylor
    (659 votes)
  • 3%
    Kris Richard
    (142 votes)
  • 7%
    Chris Petersen
    (350 votes)
4404 votes total Vote Now