Like Al Davis, Mike Brown is the owner and holds the responsibilities of general manager which means this is his team from the bottom up. Now there is no question that Marvin Lewis and his coaching staff are also deserving of a lot of credit for the team that takes the field this year, but it was Mike Brown who put his trust with Marvin Lewis and Mike Zimmer with their most recent contract extensions, keeping intact what maybe the most underrated coaching staff in the NFL. And much like Al Davis, who hired the first African American head coach Art Shell, Mike Brown is a leader as far as diversity and civil rights in the NFL are concerned. He hired an African American head coach even when some thought Lewis wasn’t ready for that kind of responsibility back in 2003.
While most of the criticisms of Mike Brown are fair, it is time to recognize that we have an owner in Cincinnati who cares more about winning than most of us, including myself until more recent years, would like to give him credit for. And has he continues to be controversial on some of his stances, more recently refusing to give leeway on the blackout restrictions for televising home games this year and charging a 10 dollar cover charge for a pep rally. Instead of rushing to blame Brown for a harsh business decision, let’s sell out every home game this year and reward Brown and Bengals fans all around Cincinnati for the competitive team that’s going to take the field this upcoming season. Mike Brown, much like Al Davis and even his legendary father Paul Brown, have been defending the “little guys” of the NFL for a long time and now it seems like the seasons of ridicule and drought are about to pay off for the the city of Cincinnati and Mike Brown; and the Bengals might just need Brown’s leadership more than any of us are willing to admit.
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