For a team that has teased with regular season success, only to fail to live up to expectations in the playoffs, some degree of change might have been expected this offseason.
But after losing both coordinators to head coaching jobs, the Bengals have to start fresh in 2014.
“The past three years is gone, we’ve got new coordinators and coaches and starting fresh,” Bengals coach Marvin Lewis said from the Senior Bowl, via Joe Reedy of the Cincinnati Enquirer. “Being here it’s kind of the start of the offseason for us as coaches so it kind of brings you back to reality. We’re going to get working again. We’re going to go back to Cincinnati and have to put the staff together and redo responsibilities and assignments and things like that because it’s different now.”
After losing Jay Gruden to Washington and Mike Zimmer to Minnesota, the Bengals promoted in-house coaches Hue Jackson and Paul Guenther into the coordinator jobs. The rounded out their defensive staff by hiring defensive backs coach Vance Joseph and linebackers coach Matt Burke this week.
“I think it’s exciting for us to hire two coaches both with their experience and with their futures,” Lewis said of the re-tooled staff. “That’s what’s exciting for me. Both guys have been experts in what they do and as far as their delivery with their guys. To bring in some different ideas, knowledge and be supportive of Paul (Guenther) and give him some battle-tested guys in the room with him.”
The Bengals needed to do something to shake out of the playoff rut they were in. And while there are plenty of talented players on both sides of the ball, and Gruden and Zimmer were well-regarded, the new message might help shake things up.