Should Bengals Fans Suddenly Become The Target?

Dec 11, 2016; Cleveland, OH, USA; Cincinnati Bengals fans cheer during the first quarter against the Cleveland Browns at FirstEnergy Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Ken Blaze-USA TODAY Sports
Dec 11, 2016; Cleveland, OH, USA; Cincinnati Bengals fans cheer during the first quarter against the Cleveland Browns at FirstEnergy Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Ken Blaze-USA TODAY Sports /

Should Bengals fans be the subject of ridicule, when it comes to team choice? Evidently, Stephen A. Smith thinks it’s fine to lump everyone together.

When a football lover decides to get involved with the sport, it can cause all sorts of havoc in their lives. But, when the Average Joe decides to don the colors of the Cincinnati Bengals it gets sticky. At this point, it would be akin to taking cyanide capsules like those dedicated secret agents in action movies. But, is it really that bad? Cheering for the Bengals shouldn’t make fans a target. Wait…should it?

Before we get into the crux of the matter, I’ll bluntly say that it’s just not fair. It’s not right to be a raving lunatic for a team and become subject to the ridicule of those who don’t agree with your choice. Now, we’re back from this brief public service announcement.

Being a Bengals fan is not a crime. Even though there are days you feel like you’re wasting time, it’s not that serious. It’s a choice that was made according to events that looked promising. The Bengals have been a Cincinnati staple since (use old geezer voice for emphasis) 19 and 68. When Paul Brown brought his love for football to the Queen City, he brought a storehouse of knowledge with him.

P.B. was a pigskin genius and wasn’t ready to retire. After a decent stint (understatement) with the Cleveland Browns, he wanted to get back into coaching. Here’s one of those shocker moments. I’ve been following this team since 1975. But, I didn’t know that Paul’s son–the notorious Mike–did the research on NFL expansion sites and picked Cincinnati. Huh? Yeah. Look it up with the link provided above. 

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Bruh…Cut To The Chase

As is his style, Stephen A. Smith went ham on Marvin Lewis and the Bengals organization. Per Cincy Jungle, Smith called out Mike Brown and blasted him for considering the possibility of signing Lewis to another contract.

"“It says that they don’t care about the citizens of Cincinnati, that they mean absolutely nothing to them, that the citizens of Cincinnati are absolute suckers, because they’re going to continue to patronize and support our product, no matter what level of ineptitude we continuously support, and more importantly, we can prove that because we don’t seem to care about winning, and they don’t seem to mind.”"

Bravo, Stephen A. That was an absolutely brilliant breakdown of the fans’ emotional state. But, there’s one thing missing. The vast majority of Bengals fans are not “suckers” who blindly follow Mr. Mike and his cronies. As I stated earlier, fans of the Orange and Black are “all in” because of their love for football. There’s also a little something called hometown pride that plays a part in this love affair with the Bengals.

There have been many years when temptation and frustration whispered to me.

“Dude. You’re a fool for following this team. Just start wearing a Steelers jersey and say you’ve been with them forever. Memorize a few legends from Pitt and start talkin’ about rings.”

Even my son was worried about my mental state. He told me I needed to have another team to follow, just to have something positive to cheer about. Welp, it didn’t happen. Bengals Brew is still the choice of beverage at my house. Yes, it gets frustrating. But, I’m not a sucker. It’s a choice I’ve made.

This Is Not A Conclusion…It’s a Thank You Note

Brown could be turning the corner. The lack of a contract for Lewis is a hot topic around water coolers in the Nati. Yes, fans are tired of the lackluster (mediocre) approach to getting it done in the postseason.  Maybe Mike wants that Lombardi before he’s pushing up daisies. Nah. It’s a money game and Brown is one of the best.

Next: Welcome To The Combine

Thank you, Mr. Smith, for giving the fans of Cincinnati a reason to stay awake. You reminded the masses to have passion and demand more. The Bengals are dear to the people of southwest Ohio. It’s time to rise up and let The Man know that we deserve more from what our tax money has paid for.

And, as usual, nothing will be done until Brown feels it’s warranted.

But, we’re not suckers.