The Bengals play their home games in Paul Brown Stadium, but they’ll no longer have a coach on the staff who was actually interviewed by Paul Brown when he initially got his job in Cincinnati.
Running backs coach Jim Anderson announced his retirement on Tuesday, ending a run with the team that began with an interview with Brown in 1984 and ran through several head coaches before reaching its end. It’s the longest tenure for any coach in Bengals history, outlasting former strength and conditioning coach Kim Wood by one year.
On the Bengals website, an article by Geoff Hobson about Anderson’s retirement quotes other African-American coaches who credit Anderson for opening doors at a time when there weren’t a lot of minority coaches on NFL sidelines. Anderson shrugs off his role as a trail blazer, but explained why those that followed benefited from his performance in Cincinnati.
“There weren’t a lot of us, but the thing we realized is we needed to go out and do our job the best we could so the door would open for other guys,” Anderson said. “You make the most of your opportunity and the door is open for the next guy behind you. Go out and do your job and do it well.”
The Bengals haven’t named a replacement for Anderson, although Hobson speculates that Hue Jackson could take on Anderson’s responsibilities in 2013.