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“It’s about us”
The Cincinnati Bengals officially started their quest for a Super Bowl on April 9th when they reported to offseason workouts. As the team starts to get back into the swing of things, the annual new motto dropped. “It’s about us”.
While Zac Taylor tries to shine a light on the oft-forgotten Cincinnati Bengals, no one else will. After a period of defensive coordinator denials and lack of free agent interest, it looks like any old Bengals offseason. That’s what it looks like to the rest of the NFL, but again, its about the Bengals this year.
Inside the building notable players have felt a change as soon as new Head Coach Zac Taylor walked into his office. Star wide receiver, A.J. Green had this to say about his 2nd ever NFL head coach. “I think he’s definitely going to be hands-on . That’s good,” Green said, per Bengals.com . “He’s young. It looks like the offense is going to [be] very high flying. We have the talent to be real good. We just have to put everything together … There’s a different energy in this building.” Quarterback Andy Dalton also had this to say about the young offensive mind: “With Zac getting here and the whole change … let’s make it all feel new and feel different,” Dalton said via the Bengals website. “I think he’s done great. From the day he stepped in here you felt the change. Obviously he had a plan for what he wanted and they’re doing it here. You can see it with all the construction happening here and the way the staff came together. They’re all in for what Zac is wanting to do.”
Its obvious that optimism is high and especially on the offensive side of the ball. However, to Bengals fans, all this is said year in and year out. We’ve heard the narrative before, just replace the Zac Taylor part with any of the offensive coordinators that have worn the orange and black under Marvin Lewis. So what finally makes things different this year? Well, taking their motto literally: it’s them. While the team as a whole who went 6-10 last season did not change that much over the offseason, the coaching staff did.
At last, the Bengals made a change at the helm and now with a new attitude and outlook, its time to turn things around and make Cincinnati cool again and bring playoff football back to the queen city. How? Offense. This is the new NFL. Offense, offense, offense. Its appealing, its “cool”, its exciting. Puts behinds in seats. Luckily, the Bengals have a fresh new offensive mind leading them with a no-BS attitude. We saw that when he made the decision to move on from the on-field headache of Linebacker Vontaze Burfict and trouble maker, Mark Walton. The winds have shifted.
With a new coach and new culture, also come returning players. Particularly on offense. As mentioned before, the Bengals will need offense moving forward. To compete, catch the eye of the public, and to keep up with the rest of the North. The Bengals are getting back former 13 TD, red zone monster, Tight End Tyler Eifert. Pairing him with 1,000 yard receiver Tyler Boyd, pro bowler A.J. Green, the AFC leading rusher in Joe Mixon, and a vet QB. This offense and the whole team has always had the talent, just never the coaching. Now that has changed.\
The Bengals have an opportunity to shock the NFL, certainly on offense. It will be about them. How they handle the highs and lows, and how they will be able to bet on themselves.