Bengals Head Coach took responsibility of the second-half timeout blunder that left the team without a single one as the Bears ran out the clock with almost 8 minutes left in the game. When asked about it after the game, he said it was his fault, as he was trying to keep the defense fresh and in position to know what hey’re assignments were:
“With the injuries we had, they were a little confused by the different personnel, and that’s my fault. But unfortunately we had to take those calls.”
Unfortunately, it was really a pick-your-poison for Lewis. Seeing your defense is clearly out-of-position, do you burn a TO to get them into their correct spots, or do you essentially leave them blind against a big-play Bears offense that was scoring at will in the second-half?
In the end, he said his team’s lack of composure was what ultimately cost them:
“Unfortunately we had a lot of guys lose composure today. We can’t do that. For whatever reason, today we didn’t get any offsets. Their guy hit our guy out of bounds late on our sideline, but we can’t retaliate. We know that. It’s not what our team does. And unfortunately today we let them get under our skin. We let that happen twice today and we can’t do that. We can’t beat ourselves like we did this afternoon.”
No Bengals team has ever gone to the playoffs starting 0-2, but two of the last three playoff teams have survived Opening Day losses. This loss certainly hurts, but a Week 2 win over the Pittsburgh Steelers on Monday Night Football will assuredly cure much of this sting, and hopefully remind everyone that these are not the Bunguls of old.