Buckle Up: The Bandwagon is Going to Get Crowded
I might be talking about you. Or your brother. Your cousin. Or that annoying guy at your office. Whenever the Bengals win a bunch of games – and they have now won four in a row – the wishy-washy Bengals fans come out of the woodwork. Fine by me I guess, I’ll never turn away future members of Bengal Nation.
Just don’t pretend that you were watching every game with Ryan “The Mad Scrambler” Fitzpatrick last season. Don’t pretend that you have been scarred by the David Klingler, Paul Justin, Scott Mitchell, and Akili Smith eras under center. Don’t pretend that you really cared when Mike Shula was doing the football opposite of his father or Dick LeBeau was leading the football equivalent of the Washington Generals. You’re not like the rest of us. You aren’t carrying around a bruised psyche or the baggage from decades worth of futility. So admit it. Own it. And please move to the back of the bandwagon.
Here are a few other thoughts following another semi-miraculous Bengals win:
1. I missed Ben Utecht for the first time this season. Truthfully, I had almost forgotten he was supposed to be playing until Dan Coats dropped two passes yesterday. Perhaps Chase Coffman can learn to block well enough to get on the field before the season is over.
2. I’m happy the team was able to bring home a win for Mike Zimmer. And don’t be surprised if Zimmer starts to get some consideration for head coaching jobs. He’s turned a consistently underachieving unit into one of the team’s strengths. His intensity and experience will look pretty good to some owners.
3. Dennis Roland took the majority of the snaps at right tackle and performed well. He seems to be a better fit than Anthony Collins given the team’s desire to be a power-running squad.
4. Can you share the credit any better than Cedric Benson did yesterday? He seems to be a perfect teammate, the anti- Corey Dillon.
“‘What an awesome accomplishment against a well-established and tough defense in our AFC Division. I’m very proud of my offense, offensive line in particular. The Bengals have given me a shot. It’s hard for me to put into words how wonderful a feeling it is and how tremendous an accomplishment it is for me personally. But I want to give a tremendous thanks to the guys in the offensive line as a whole – fullbacks, quarterbacks, receivers, everybody, was blocking and did a great job. Thanks to the offensive coordinator for sticking with the ground game and all the hard work the offensive staff has put in to make this thing work. I greatly appreciate it.” (Bengals.com)
5. The Bengals should score a lot of points against Houston on Sunday. And hopefully, they can cover Andre Johnson a little bit better than last year. There’s a chance that the Bengals could win by a comfortable margin for once, but that doesn’t seem to be their style.
6. The Bengals 3-0 divisional record is going to be a big help later in the season. With two of their final three AFC North games are at home, they should have a chance to gain the tiebreaker over their division rivals if it comes to that.
7. Expect some of the Bengals games later in the year to get “flexed” into primetime. The Bengals are back and a national audience will likely get to see them again sometime soon.
8. After all those years of pain and suffering, it feels great to see some comeback wins and a fast start from this year’s team. Soak. It. In. WHO-DEY!