After losing Jay Gruden to the Washington Redskins, the Cincinnati Bengals now appear on the verge of losing defensive coordinator Mike Zimmer, as well as his potential replacement, linebackers coach Paul Guenther:
Bengals could wind up losing both coordinators. Jay Gruden is Redskins HC and Mike Zimmer has emerged as a favorite in Minnesota.
— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) January 9, 2014
Guenther will have his shot to become a DC with Zimmer or if Zim leaves and he stays, or possibly with Gruden. He’s in a really good spot. — Adam Caplan (@caplannfl) January 9, 2014
Interesting to see what happens with #Bengals‘ coordinators. Belief: Hue Jackson will be OC, Paul Guenther will be DC if Zimmer leaves.
— Eric Edholm (@Eric_Edholm) January 9, 2014
The Bengals always like to fill coordinator positions with an in-house candidate, and they’re already likely to promote running backs coach Hue Jackson to become the next OC.
Guenther doesn’t have nearly the amount of credentials that Jackson has, and the Bengals will likely gauge their options if Zimmer does in fact leave.
Some of the notable candidates on the market are former Detroit Lions head coach Jim Schwartz, former Kansas City Chiefs and Cleveland Browns head coach Romeo Crennel and former Houston Texans and Dallas Cowboys defensive coordinator Wade Phillips.
The Bengals need to look at all of those options before going straight to Guenther, who is in his ninth season on the Bengals coaching staff.
Guenther held dual roles on the staff from 2006-11, assisting on special teams in all those seasons while also working with a position group. He worked five years with linebackers and one year with defensive backs.