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OBI: Takeo Spikes talks Marvin Lewis, Vontaze Burfict and Bengals’ future outlook

We had the immense pleasure of speaking with the Cincinnati Bengals’ former first-round linebacker about his time with the team, his thoughts on Vontaze Burfict, where the league is headed in this unique time and much more!

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Back in 1998, the Cincinnati Bengals were attempting to rebuild their entire team to get back to their glory days from a decade prior. The defense was the primary focus, with the club opting to draft two high-profile linebackers in the first round of the draft that year.

One of those picks was a star for the team for five seasons and carved out an illustrious 15-year NFL career. Takeo Spikes, picked 13th overall by the Bengals, joins us on the program to talk about a myriad of topics, as 2020 training camp opens up across the league.

We have a lot to ask the former Pro Bowl linebacker, including his reflections on his time with the team, where he thinks they’re headed now, the immediate future of the league, his new podcast on the BLEAV network and more!

  • When we asked Spikes about his departure from Cincinnati in the 2003 offseason, he didn’t pull any punches. He was frustrated with the direction of the team and didn’t listen to Marvin Lewis’ sales pitch.
  • Spikes gushed about former teammate and fellow first-round linebacker, Brian Simmons, saying “he (Simmons) could play in any era”.
  • Former Bengals linebacker, Vontaze Burfict, had Spikes’ respect in some regards with his style of play, but felt he crossed the line too often.
  • The former Bengals’ linebacker ultimately gained respect for what Lewis built and likes the direction they are headed with Joe Burrow and Co.

If you missed the live recording, you can check out the videos on Cincy Jungle’s Facebook page, or our YouTube channel. Or, you can always get the audio version of the podcast on your favorite platform!

Our thanks to you for listening, as well to Mr. Spikes, who joins us courtesy of the BLEAV podcast network. Go check out his podcast, “Behind the Mask” on a number of platforms!

If you’re unable to join us live here at Cincy Jungle or YouTube for every episode, all Orange and Black Insider content is available here on CJ, the Stitcher, Spotify, iHeart Radio and Google Play Music apps, our YouTube channel, as well as through Megaphone and, as always, on iTunes! You can tweet us @BengalsOBI or get in touch with us via email at Thanks for listening and go subscribe to our channels to be notified when we’re going live and when new episodes are available!