Before I start with this list, let me state that no matter which coach is chosen to replace Marvin Lewis as head coach of the Cincinnati Bengals for 2018, he is probably doomed for failure because of team owner Mike Brown. So let’s look at the guys who the Bengals could pick.
Most Likely Choices
1) Hue Jackson, Cleveland Browns head coach. It has been rumored that Jackson had been offered the job as Bengals coach by Mike Brown but turned it down in favor of the Browns job. Of course, Brown wanted Jackson to wait until Marvin retired. Now, Jackson has won one game in two years, so you would think maybe the Bengals wouldn’t hire him, but with the Bengals and Mike Brown, I am sure that won’t be a problem. The fact is Brown considers Jackson part of the family and that is more important to Brown than anything.
2) Paul Guenther, Cincinnati Bengals defensive coordinator. Guenther has done a decent job as the Bengals defensive coordinator and once again Brown considers him part of the family. Would this be a good hire? No, it wouldn’t. Guenther simply doesn’t have the experience or personality to pull it off.
3) Paul Alexander, Cincinnati Bengals offensive line caoch. Alexander would be the absolute biggest nightmare scenario for Bengals fans. He has been in Cincinnati forever and has been a complete failure. He coaches the worst offensive line in football and, on top of that, he is the man who wanted to select the guys that make up that atrocious line.
4) Bill Lazor, Cincinnati Bengals offensive coordinator. A disciple of Chip Kelly, Lazor got off to a hot start and has since fizzled. You wouldn’t think Lazor would be considered a head coaching candidate and he wouldn’t anywhere else but Cincinnati.
5) Josh McDaniels, New England Patriots offensive coordinator. McDaniels is the one guy on this part of the list I would be OK with – not excited by, but just OK with. He failed in his first shot in Denver as haed caoch, but he was very young at the time and maybe he learned something from the experience. He would also bring some of Bill Belichick’s knack of exploiting matchups that the Bengals have sorely missed. I think the possibility exists to get McDaniels because of his past failure; maybe it won’t take as much money to get him here and maybe as a younger coach he won’t demand as much control as other coaches would.
The Best (And Highly Doubtful) Options
1) Bruce Arians, Arizona Cardinals head coach. This could only happen if Arians gets fired in Arizona, even if he did though Mike Brown would probably not want to pay the money it would take to get him and on top of that Arians would probably want to much say in what goes on. So I will lump Jon Gruden and the other high-profile guys here.
2) David Shaw, Stanford Cardinal head coach. Shaw has done a great job at Stanford and is an offensive innovator who has built teams through the air and now with running back Bryce Love through the ground game. Everybody in the NFL would love to see Shaw as a head coach, but Mike Brown would never take this leap.
3) Chris Peterson, Washington Huskies head coach Peterson is a winner everywhere he goes, from Boise State to Washington. He runs a pro-style offense and he actually might know how to use John Ross.
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