Cincinnati Bengals: The Brown family MUST change how they operate
By Larry Spicer
It looks like another lost season for the Cincinnati Bengals. The Brown family needs to realize that their way of operating is not working. Although history says they won’t change, the future may dictate that they have no choice.
The first thing most fans of the Cincinnati Bengals are going to say when reading this is the Brown family will never change. I have no inside information that they will change and this article doesn’t hint that they actually will. However, if they don’t adjust how they operate their professional football franchise, the consequences could be catastrophic.
Allow me to put my fan hat on for just a moment. Having followed this team for over thirty years, I am like any other fan and want to see them have success. Fortunately, I am old enough to have seen this franchise have big time success with two Super Bowl appearances in the 80s. Unfortunately, there are a lot of Bengals fans who are not old enough to remember that success. Some fans were not even born.
Although it feels unlikely that this organization can build a true consistent contender, I cannot accept a narrative that it is impossible, because I have seen it. The only ones who truly have control of this are the Brown family. Once again, I fully expect eyes to roll at that statement. That is completely understandable. After all, it is the Brown family that created the dreadful football team we have watched this year. It is by no means the first one that they have created either.
I do believe Mike Brown to be a fine person who wants to win. I am not here to personally bash him. That being said, things have to change from an organizational standpoint. No one else can succeed to the maximum unless they do.
The Bengals may or may not draft a quarterback this upcoming offseason. Andy Dalton may still have a future with the franchise. It is hard to know for sure what the front office is thinking right now. Regardless, if the Bengals do not attack free agency more aggressively by being willing to pay better players, then a new quarterback can only do so much. Offensive line and linebacker must be improved. It is impossible to fix both in the draft alone, especially if the team is trying to address finding the quarterback of the future as well.
The scouting department must also be expanded. There have simply been too many misses over the last few drafts. Having the coaches involved in this process is certainly not a bad thing, but they have far too much on their plates with having to basically act as scouts too. These are not impossible things to ask for. Almost every other team in the league operates in this manner now. It should not be too much to ask that the Bengals do the same.
Paul Brown was a visionary and pioneer for the NFL. Thus, the Brown family name should be thought of with respect among football circles and not a laughing stock. That is not a personal jab, but a plea to demand that respect from a football standpoint. Like every other team, the Bengals have a loyal fan base, even when it is angry. They deserve better.
There are also rumblings from local politicians that the stadium lease will not be renewed with the current product being what it is. If true, this would be a travesty for the city of Cincinnati. This city loves football and needs this team and the Bengals need this city. A city that has given so much to this organization deserves a winner. The fans deserve a winner. The Brown name deserves a winner, but it is up to the Brown family to actually deliver that winner.