To start off, there is no chance Marvin Lewis will be returning to the Bengals as a defensive coordinator. Cincinnati and Lewis have both moved on. This is more to see what the public opinion of Dom Capers as defensive coordinator is like.
This is because it has been reported that Jack Del Rio and the Bengals agreed that he wouldn’t be a great fit at defensive coordinator. Also, Dennis Allen decided to stay with the Saints after it was also reported that he could be a possible candidate for Cincinnati.
That leaves Capers as the only other candidate that we know of at this time, and well, he doesn’t exactly have the greatest track record. He is most well known for his time as the head coach of the Panthers (from 1995-98) and Texans (from 2002-05). Neither of those stops were particularly successful with only one trip to the playoffs, though it did in the NFC title game in 1996 while in Carolina.
Since then, Capers has bounced around as a defensive assistant coach or coordinator. His most recent stint was as the Packers defensive coordinator from 2009-17 and was out of the league last season. His first two seasons were great, as the Packers finished in the top 10 of most major statistical categories, but he never had another top 10 defense after that. In fact, in the next seven seasons, he only had a defense that finished above 16th in scoring three times (two of those were when he had the 15th ranked scoring defense.)
Now, there is some merit that sometimes coaches who take a year off come back doing a better job, but you’d like for this new era of Bengals football to start off with a little more confidence at such a major coaching spot. The obvious plus to Capers would be his experience. He took his first coordinating job in 1992 when Taylor was only around nine-years-old.
You know who else has experience though? Lewis. He actually has 16 seasons of experience doing the very job that Taylor will be tasked with.
Talk about convenient, right? If there was a way this wouldn’t cause a major conflict in team and coaching chemistry, it would be worlds better than the Capers hire.
There was actually a time when Lewis was viewed as one of the best defensive coordinators in the NFL. How do you think he got the job with the Bengals after all?
The 2000 Ravens had probably the best defense of all-time. They made Trent Dilfer a Super Bowl winning quarterback after all. Also, Lewis actually turned around the Bengals defense last season after it looked like a revolving door could put up more resistance. It wasn’t great, but you could see he understood the personnel’s strengths.
Either way, it appears the Bengals plan on pairing Taylor with an experienced defensive coordinator who also has experience as a head coach. Whether that ends up being Capers or (hopefully) someone else remains to be seen.
Who would you rather have?
Who would you rather have as a defensive coordinator?
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