Has the Bengals kept up with the rest of the league in scouting? Some say yes, many say no. Many fans point to the lack of equality in the Bengals scounting department as a direct correlation to the lack of equality on the field. My take on the whole deal is this: If the Bengals did have a bigger scouting department, would they do better anyway? Would Mike Brown put out the dollars to sign the players they scout and determine to be top level players anyway? Seems like the two go hand in hand. No sense in scouting the players if they won’t be signed based on the ownership. Sure, I know there is a salary cap in place. How do the other teams do it then? They get creative with bonuses and terms. The Brown family doesn’t want to put the team in “cap jeopardy” later, so they won’t do things like that.
How will the Bengals compete? Well the can’t. To put it simply, this team is never really going to get on a roll of a multiyear win streak like a Patriots, Cowboys, Packers, etc. They won’t for many reasons. One, they don’t have the scouting department to assess second tier players than can be brought in for cheaper contracts, yet play like a star. If they had the scouts to do it, then we might have a shot. Secondly, the free agents won’t come here because we can’t structure the contracts to get them the money they want, so we’re a top tier free agent black hole. If we could get a couple of years in a row of winning, and not just 9-7 or 10-6 seasons, then we might have a shot. However, just like the old saying “you have to have credit to get credit” and the Bengals have no credit with the top free agents on the market, or their agents representing them.