Bengals: Zac Taylor ranked below 5 first-year head coaches

Cincinnati Bengals, Zac Taylor (Photo by Michael Reaves/Getty Images)
Cincinnati Bengals, Zac Taylor (Photo by Michael Reaves/Getty Images) /

While Cincinnati Bengals fans aren’t shocked to see head coach Zac Taylor near the bottom of most head coach rankings, what is surprising is to see five first-year head coaches ranked higher than him in CBS Sports’ recent rankings.

Yes, Taylor has only won six games through two years, but none of those guys have won anything as a head coach yet. Taylor also has the “honor” of playing in one of the toughest divisions in football and his rookie quarterback got injured in the final stretch of the season. He’s not a perfect coach by any means but it’s not all his fault either.

Cody Benjamin was the author of this piece and here was his reasoning for putting Taylor at No. 30 on the list:

"You certainly can’t put all the blame for the Bengals’ struggles on Taylor, who lost No. 1 pick Joe Burrow to injury in 2020. But two years in, we’ve yet to see many reasons why Cincy should be drooling at the possibility of another Sean McVay emerging here. Whether or not it’s fair, Taylor is primed to be cut loose if the Bengals don’t hit at least eight or nine wins in 2021."

Taylor had a lot of hype in the 2018 season as the Rams’ quarterback coach and for good reason. Jared Goff had his best year in the pros (and we’ve since seen he isn’t all that good) with Taylor as his quarterback coach and the Rams made it all the way to the Super Bowl, only to lose to the Patriots.

Bengals HC Zac Taylor is one of the worst head coaches in the league.

Taylor has gone just 6-25-1 during his two years at the helm and he’s certainly under the gun this year. Benjamin notes that he’ll probably have to win eight or nine games this year but I’m not sure the Bengals cut ties with him if the Bengals have a losing record but are at least competitive. There have been several things working against him (the division and injuries) and it’s been hard for this team to really show much of anything.

Winning just six games in two seasons isn’t a good look, but for Taylor to be ranked below Robert Saleh (Jets), Urban Meyer (Jaguars), Nick Sirianni (Eagles), Brandon Staley (Chargers), and Arthur Smith (Falcons) is a stretch. None of these guys have proven anything yet at the head coach level, at least not in the NFL.

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There’s a lot riding on this season for Zac Taylor and deservedly so, but at the same time, he shouldn’t be considered a worse head coach than five guys who we’ve yet to see do anything.