Even with the Cincinnati Bengals being 3-2 on the young season, head coach Zac Taylor is still dealing with his fair share of criticisms. The latest comes from Seth Galina of Pro Football Focus, who berated the third-year head coach in his recent article.
The title of the piece is “If Zac Taylor doesn’t evolve, Joe Burrow and the Bengals’ 2021 season is already over” if that’s any indication for the tone of the article.
Galina starts out by saying that despite being 3-2, the Bengals aren’t good. He then goes on to mention how the offense has been a major issue for the team and considering the reputation Taylor had when he was hired as Sean McVay’s right-hand man, that’s not good whatsoever.
"The unit ranks 29th in expected points added per play in the regular season since his hiring and 28th since the team drafted quarterback Joe Burrow first overall in 2020.The offense continues to be bad in 2021, ranking 21st in overall efficiency. Not being able to move the ball effectively could spell disaster going forward, as the Bengals face a much harder second half of the schedule."
Galina then discusses how the Bengals have had one of the easiest schedules in the league to start the year and that won’t last for much longer. They have the Lions this week and the Jets in two weeks, but other than that, the schedule is going to be brutal down the stretch.
Zac Taylor highly-criticized by PFF
Here’s more from Galina:
"The 2019 version of Burrow is probably lost forever. That’s not the end of the world for him, though, because he is still supremely accurate. The problem is that the offense still treats him like this kind of player. He just isn’t.The Taylor offense, which to a certain degree is molded around trying to give Burrow concepts and ideas that he feels comfortable in, is not getting the job done. It’s a spread offense that relies on receivers winning one-on-one battles and the quarterback, like 2019 LSU, being able to create off his own one-on-ones."
It has been upsetting to see Taylor’s game-plan throughout the season, as he tends to call very conservative games. This past week against the Packers, he opted to run it on 3rd and 5 rather than putting the ball in Burrow’s hands.
Galina really hammers home the idea that Taylor isn’t doing his part as the head coach of the team. He goes into detail about why the Bengals’ offense isn’t getting the job done and what can be done in order to improve things.
He isn’t sold on this team though and it’s understandable as to why. Yes, the Bengals are 3-2 but they allowed the Vikings and Steelers to crawl back into those respective games. They could easily be 1-4 right now.
On the other side of the coin, this team could also easily be 5-0 at the moment. They forced overtime with the Packers and let that Bears game slip away.
I get why Taylor is being criticized as he’s supposed to be an offensive guru and this offense just hasn’t been that impressive so far. Galina’s criticisms are valid, as he’s right — This team won’t go far if Taylor can’t make adjustments and put this team in a better position.