Word emerged on Thursday that the Bengals plan to hire Rams quarterbacks coach Zac Taylor when the L.A. season ends. And the Bengals will now be sweating bullets until the L.A. season ends.
Per a league source, the Bengals currently are “terrified” that the league will investigate whether they violated the constantly-violated rules regarding the making of offers to head-coaching candidates before offers can be made.
That’s how the league often enforces the rules. Sure, plenty of teams break the rules. But that never stops the league from investigating whether one specific team in one specific situation broke the rule, imposing discipline on that specific team for breaking the rule, and ignoring the widely-known reality that others have routinely broken the rules.
Last year, everyone knew that the Colts had offered the head-coaching job to Patriots offensive coordinator Josh McDaniels, and that McDaniels had accepted. But it couldn’t be official or formal until the Patriots’ season ended, and then the Patriots talked McDaniels (who already was having misgivings) out of going.
The thinking is that other candidates were informed that Taylor is the choice, and that Taylor has informed colleagues that he is the choice. If that’s true, the line may have been crossed, and the electronic paper trial would easily prove it.
So, yes, the Bengals are now worried that the league will come down on them. Even though the league has always looked the other way regarding every instance where that rule was being violated — and where everyone knew it.