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Chapter ending?

Posted by hobsonschoice1 on December 26, 2010 – 10:55 am

Ochocinco

Even as Marvin Lewis expresses optimism about coming back to coach next season, Sunday’s game against the Chargers still has an end-of-era feel to it at Paul Brown Stadium.

It is the era that started with the win over the undefeated Chiefs on Nov. 16, 2003 and spanned two division titles, two home playoff games, four Monday night games, two deaths, and a marriage proposal. Euphoria. Heartbreak. Celebrity. Injury. Headlines. Prayers. You name it, whatever you want to call it (The Marvin Era, The Carson Decade, The Age of Chad) it has had a little bit of everything for the Reality TV generation.

The conventional wisdom is that Lewis wants some changes if he’s going to return and Palmer is so beat up and frustrated one day shy of his 31st birthday that there have to be changes.  It can be assumed that Bengals president Mike Brown isn’t happy, either.  That’s where the guessing game starts.

In the end, he’s the guy that loaded up for this season. He signed two big-money receivers. He made defensive coordinator Mike Zimmer the highest-paid assistant coach in club history. He re-signed all the veterans on both sides of the ball, took Zimmer’s recommendation to sign cornerback Adam Jones (Zimmer took responsibility for what turned out to be a solid move), and Palmer’s recommendation for Terrell Owens. The fact that all he got out of it was a top three draft pick can’t sit well with Brown.

Even if Lewis comes back, there’s a sense this chapter is closed. Lewis and Palmer can mold young guns like Carlos Dunlap, Michael Johnson, Geno Atkins, Rey Maualuga, Jermain Gresham, Andre Caldwell, Jordan Shipley, Bernard Scott and Jerome Simpson as the roster balance shifts to a new generation.  Has a Bengals era ever ended with such young talent? The offseason question has to be how to grow it. 

Heightening the end-of-era feel is the CW and guesswork that wide receiver Chad Ochocinco won’t be back for an 11th season at age 33, making Sunday the end of The Age of Chad. If this it, what a run.

Never mind he did things no Bengals receiver has ever done, such as catch 10,000 yards (10,783) and 750 balls (751), and go to six Pro Bowls. But he also did things no NFL receiver did, such as leading his conference in receiving yards four straight seasons from 2003 to 2006, while becoming a mainstream celebrity in popular culture.

The debate is always going to be if that celebrity got in the way of his game. He’s a borderline Hall of Famer, but did his emotion and passion cross the line too many times? There are arguments either way.

His performance in big games is mixed. His numbers in the eight Decembers under Lewis are 14 touchdowns in 32 games with 149 catches for 2,050 yards. That’s 13.8 yards per catch for an average of 4.7 catches and 64 yards per game. That is less than his career averages of 14.4 yards per catch with an average of five catches for 71 yards per game.

Maybe not that big of a difference, but in an era in which the Bengals were oh-so-close, a difference just the same. In his two playoff games, he caught just six balls for 87 yards and no touchdowns. The talk shows and national pundits raged the Bengals would be better without him.

But he did come up big in some big moments. In the two home games the Bengals had to absolutely win to win the division - Cleveland in 2005 and Kansas City in 2009 - The Ocho bailed them put in the last seconds. Tied 20-20 with the Browns, he drew two pass-interference penalties to set up a last-snap field goal. Last year with the Bengals tied with the Chiefs at 10-10, he made a falling-back touchdown catch of Palmer’s six-yard bullet on third down with 2:03 left to win it. And in that December run he caught a TD in four straight games.

There were about three or four years there when no one could cover him. Ask a rookie Adam Jones about the game Ochocinco stole in the fourth quarter from the Titans in Tennessee in a huge over-the-hump win in ’05.

As usual with The Ocho, it’s never cut-and-dried. There are always a couple of layers to it, which makes him so damn fun.

If this is it, that may be the way to remember him. Don’t give yourself a headache trying to win a debate. He has been the leading receiver and one of the top NFL players on some of the best Bengals teams, and he made you smile at some point along the way.

It may not be a Super Bowl or Hall of Fame legacy. But it’s a hell of a legacy just the same.


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Posted in Hobson's Choice | 32 Comments »


32 Responses to “Chapter ending?”

  1. By 2ndboot on Dec 26, 2010 | Reply

    I’ve said it before and say it now that Chad has put more warm butts in cold seats than anyone in Cincinnati, but now his warm butt drawing power seems to just be drawing gas.. You’re right abut one thing.. you won’t win the Chad debate.

  2. By sapon1 on Dec 26, 2010 | Reply

    The first time I saw Chad running drills at training camp I thought for sure I was watching a young man that would be in the Hall of Fame. For me Chad is a glass half empty.

  3. By the513 on Dec 26, 2010 | Reply

    After watching todays game, seeing the young receivers do an awesome job, seeing carson look more relaxed than I have seen him in a long time, I must say I am looking forward to next year. That being said, I still believe Ocho is an asset. He draws double coverage, still makes great catches and keeps alot of interest in Cincy. I also think that TO coming here was somewhat of a distaction for Chad, It may have backfired on him…..For what he has done for us, I believe him and Carson both need to finish there careers in a Bengal uniform. I have changed my mind, somewhat, on what changes need made. The biggest thing that I havent changed my mind on is that Brat has to go and bring in Hue Jackson. It took until game 14 for him to find the recipe again. I believe if we run the ball, play good defense,just lke we have the last 2 games, we will be back in the playoffs next year

  4. By kaptkurt on Dec 26, 2010 | Reply

    It would seem to me that Ocho will stay for two reasons.

    1. He gets $3.5 million if he gets released, $6million if he stays. So we get him for what amounts to $2.5 million for the year. Given the fiascos of Coles aand Bryant, that’s a steal. If we bring in a rookie WR Cahd’s work ethic alone should be a reason to keep him around.

    2. He’ll be playing for a contract next year (something he’s never done in his career) so we should get the best of Chad.

    I think the key is getting him in for OTAs, if there are any. And if there aren’t, his familiarity with Carson Palmer will be huge.

  5. By 4stringking on Dec 27, 2010 | Reply

    The Debate about Chad and T.O. for that matter, can be won simply. Sure, hey both have come up big in spots and both have great numbers and put butts in seats. Heres where the debate can be won. Look at the Cowboy teams that T.O. played on before going to Buffalo. Sure T.O. did some great things, put up some numbers, but ultimately they lost way more games than a team with that much talent should ever have lost. Same thing with Chad. Great numbers, entertaining, yada yada. The fact remains that the Bengals had some pretty good tems in place around Chad and never even won a single post season game. Only went to two of them which is even more unbelievable. This season right here is the ultimate debate clincher on the Chad subject for me though. If we’re debating on “Would the Bengals be better off without him?” The Bengals went 2 – 10 with those guys on the field every game. The first game they went without T.O. and limited chad we saw a team instantly develop an identity and WIN A GAME! Then the next game with no T.O. and Chad completely sidelined, The bengals offense had their best game of the season and Carson played one of his best games of his career. This against the number 1 ranked defense in the NFL. You can say what you want but results are what speak in the NFL.

  6. By 4stringking on Dec 27, 2010 | Reply

    To put it in even better perspective, look at the 2nd Steeler game. The game righ before this two game turn around. The Defense didn’t give up a touchdown in that game. Amazingly the Bengals ran the ball 1 time in the second half. When you look back at the games with thoe guys it just seemed like Bratkowski and Palmer felt too much pressure to get them the ball and keep their diva attitudes in check. This lead to two pick sixes by Carson and definately his worst performance as a Bengal in my opinion. People were saying Carson lost it, and trade him away. Then just 2 weeks later without T.O. and without Chad he has one of if not his best performance as a Bengal. The proof is in the results my friends.

  7. By mwindle1973 on Dec 27, 2010 | Reply

    I had been wondering what Marvin Lewis’ record was when a RB runs x amount of times in a game. I was lucky enough to hear Lapham rattle this one off during the Chargers game.

    30-2 is Lewis, when a single RB carries 25 times or more.

  8. By bengalpirate on Dec 27, 2010 | Reply

    After yesterday’s display of youth and talent, yes it is a “Chapter ending” but also, perhaps a chapter beginning? It is really fun to see the young guys step up and make plays, as well as re-kindling the enthusiasm in the older guys. It bodes well for the future team chemistry.

  9. By enders9 on Dec 27, 2010 | Reply

    4stringking, lets be honest. Most of what you just said is a load of crap.

    In 2004, the Eagles only lost two games when TO was playing. One was the superbowl, which the Eagles hadn’t been able to reach the previous couple seasons.

    In 2006, the Cowboys weren’t any worse than they were in 05 and they still had Bledsoe at QB for nearly half the year. In 2007, they lost three games and one of those loses TO didn’t play in. They struggled in 08, but that was hardly TOs fault. Two of their losses came when Romo was injured. Their 09 record wasn’t much better than their 08 record, and then this year they are one of the few teams who are a bigger disappointment than the Bengals.

    The Bengals did NOT have good teams around Chad, the defense has been terrible for the Bengals up until Zimmer became the DC. Before Zimmer, the defense was laughably bad every season. And aside from 05-07, the offense has been average at best every season. The only time the offense has been in the top 10 are those 3 seasons. Chad was a stud before Carson became the starting QB.

    Now I will agree that Carson might think he has to get them the ball to keep them happy, but that’s still on Carson. Those two pick sixes you are referring to, 100% his fault.

  10. By mwindle1973 on Dec 27, 2010 | Reply

    @kaptkurt

    Thank you for pointing this out. Why would we pass up another season with Ocho at 2.5M? That would be crazy wouldn’t it?

    As far as people saying we are winning because TO and CHad are out. Rubbish! The entire offense is executing now. They are lining up right and doing the shifts and motions correctly. Blocking the correct people, etc, etc.

    I think people don’t understand that the offense was not even lining up correctly on some plays. Guys blocking the wrong way, motioning to the wrong place. Not shifting during motion when required. Running the wrong route for the play called, etc.etc.

    They executed pretty good for 2 games and we win them both, no big surprise there.

    I think it’s partly that Ocho, TO, Palmer & Benson have been trying so hard to make up for our inadequacies as a team, that they had become part of the problem unintentionally.

    In otherwords pressing things way to hard. Benson has 5 fumbles and has never had a problem before this in his career.

    All this said Simpson and Caldwell played a great game.

  11. By 4stringking on Dec 27, 2010 | Reply

    What really bothers me is that coming into this season I expected to see a real vet youth mix on offense. Marvin was raving on Caldwell being the most improved player and Simpson was really progressin and not making the same mistakes that kept him on the sideline for his first 2 seasons. I thought we would see the same smash mouth team that ran the ball down teams throat with a real dynamic passing game with the addition of T.O. and a shiny new tight end and finally a dependable T.J replacement in Shiply. Add in Caldwells speed and Simpsons talent and you have a really diverse rotation of recievers that would be impossible to be completely prepared for. It’s a real shame that Marv and Brat never saw what they could have had if they would have remembered they had talent waiting to be deployed. That said the fact that having T.O. and Chad on the same offense really held this club back is obvious and its all up hill from here.

  12. By looking4sb1 on Dec 27, 2010 | Reply

    I am overjoyed to see Simpson finally step up to the plate and hit a home run. Now, he just has to prove that he can be consistent each and every game. I agree with some the previous posts that picking up the $6 million option on Chad would be more beneficial to the team — primarily because you can never have too much depth. Plus, Chad has given this organization so much effort. I say, if he wants to come back in a role that is more shared with the younger wideouts and put in the time in the offseason, then welcome him back with open arms. But if his attitude isn’t team-first, let him go.

    And to repeat what has been said so often this year — send Brat packing!

  13. By tepidfan31 on Dec 27, 2010 | Reply

    Chad was a top WR, but also a huge ego. I think the transition has begun, just don’t understand why it took Marvin this long to get Simpson into a game. I think that Chad and TO must go, since the money must be spent on guys like Joseph and other FAs. We will need another backup WR, but you don’t pay a guy like Chad to sit on the bench.

  14. By tepidfan31 on Dec 27, 2010 | Reply

    I am for a loss against the Ravens. Why? If we win, there could possibly be 9 teams with records of 5 wins or less, and for the good of the franchise a better draft choice through 7 seven rounds would be much better than finishing a lousy season, whether it be 4 or 5 wins.

  15. By tepidfan31 on Dec 27, 2010 | Reply

    Just an added note, if we win and the other games go as expected, we will drop to number 9 in the draft order because of our strength of schedule, whereas a loss we would be a number 4. Mike and Marvin might like it, but we fans would, or should, not.

  16. By overthroensamoan on Dec 27, 2010 | Reply

    Unless M Brown makes some big changes Lewis is gone. I don’t see an indoor facility,extra scouts or GM coming anytime soon so see ya later Marv. I think Lewis would rather be a coordinator or even set out a year than have to be coach,scout,baby sitter and shrink for Brown. As far as Chad goes he was great for a few years then decided football was a side job. He’s more interested in pandering for a camera than improving his route running. I think he believes teams will be falling all over themselves to sign him, I’m not so sure. He’s been a publicity hound for quite some time now and unfortunately I think he’s to far gone to change.

  17. By rparr32 on Dec 28, 2010 | Reply

    This may not have a whole lot to do with this blog post, however, what is wrong with people in Cincinnati? I am referring to fans and coaches, and media. Carson Palmer has 2 good games out of the last 20 and now all of a sudden he can still be an elite QB. NEWSFLASH people, elite QB’s have good games 70 percent of the time, not 10 percent. You people need to wake up. As a fan this is why things are so frustrating. This organization and fans seem to want to hold on to prayers instead of making the changes needed to be sucessfull, when they should be made. Carson Palmer is a decent QB, but elite? NO WAY!!! We held on to chad and look what happened, no results. He should have been gone 2 years ago when they were offered a first round pick for the trade. But no, the media, organization, and coaches want to hold on to prayers that continue to shed negative results. A single player doesnt make a team, or even two players for that matter. Ask New England, bye bye Randy Moss (one of best recievers in the league)and they havent missed a beat, and look at what they got in return (while he still had some good value in the market)A trade for chad right now generates a 3rd round pick. WHOAAAAA….Another stupid move by this team, AGAIN!!! Hire someone with some brains because this organization is running out of excuses, and bad decisions.

  18. By kaptkurt on Dec 28, 2010 | Reply

    Coles, Bryant, Owens, Jones. Those are the WR brought in over the last 2 years. Dez Briscoe was drafted. I love the game Simpson and Caldwell had but let’s not make our reservations to Canton just yet. I hope like hell their careers are closer to Sunday than the last 3 years. If they’re as good as everyone saw last weekend, why did we bring in 5 players to keep them on the bench? Nothing would please me more than to see these two put up numbers better than Chad and TJ. They have some BIG shoes to fill.

  19. By bengalmaniac on Dec 28, 2010 | Reply

    4 weeks ago people were blasting the Bengals for drafting Simpson saying he was a bust. This is not a guy that has had the talent and was just being hidden. He could not pick up the offense, and Marvin was not the only one that was holding him out, all coaches were in agreement, especially the receivers coach and Offensive coordinator. We played a team that flew across the country on Christmas day to play in very cold weather, which they never do well. This was a fluke. This season cannot be blamed on Chad or TO, this falls squarely on the coaching from the offensive side of the ball. No matter what anyone says there is no pressure to get either TO or Ocho the ball, don’t buy into the media hype. We’ll see how it goes next week against a team playing for the division and then we’ll discuss how it goes. Getting rid of your most experienced receiver is a bad idea. Without Chad our receiver depth chart gets thin.

  20. By looking4sb1 on Dec 28, 2010 | Reply

    Rparr, I agree with you that Palmer has been frustrating to watch over the past three years, but getting rid of him next year isn’t the answer. After all, who are we replacing him with? If we are going through the draft, a young rookie QB is only going to have his confidence busted as he goes against two top-5 defenses four times a year while constantly being punished by defenses as a result of a less-than-mediocre offensive line. I don’t have a problem with bringing in the QB of the future next year, but give him a year to learn on the bench and give the franchise another year to shore up the offensive line woes. Regardless of how poorly Palmer has looked on occasions, he is still better than half the QBs in the league, and he can do damage when given time in the pocket while throwing to focused receivers who run correct routes. If the problems on the O-line are corrected next year, Palmer could have a great year — thus we could get decent trade value for him as his replacement comes in with a little more experience about the pro game.

  21. By whodeysteve on Dec 28, 2010 | Reply

    I thought what TJ had to say on ESPN was interesting and thought I would post it on here.
    Houshmandzadeh: “Carson, I would bet there is no chance that he’s gone(talking about next year).” “Yeah, he’s too good. Carson is the real deal. You can say it’s Carson’s fault all you want and he will take all the blame, because that’s how he is. But trust me, most of those interceptions and a lot of things that’s going on, they are not even his fault. Now, obviously, some of them are when he tries to force things when you get behind. But I know that offense. So I know the hand signals they make, I know what they’re trying to accomplish when a play is called and what defense they’re looking for. So when you see something go wrong, I know what’s going on and most of those things aren’t even his fault. But with the type of guy Carson is, he will always take the blame.” -And this is taken from a interview by ESPN just about week before the last Steeler game and I know it’s only been 2 game’s but I also know only 2 spot’s have changed since then and Palmer has instantly went up too a perfect QB rating over the last 2 weeks of 158.3.

  22. By bengalinthedesert on Dec 29, 2010 | Reply

    I agree, Chad has done some great things for this organization, the greatest one of which was getting publicity, and selling Jerseys. But we left the Bungles image behind, isn’t it time we leave the clown image behind as well? What IS important to me was the halftime episode in that crushing defeat against the Steelers in that fateful playoff game that Carson’s knee got mashed. Did Chad come to blows, or take a swing with any of his coaches? As much denial as there was from the locker room, Geoff himself on this very blog at some point eventually said that SOMETHING happened by using the word incident.

    It’s time we take a page out of the WINNER’s handbook (Patriots) and let Chad go and see if he can make his seeds sprout on the other side of the fence. I am sure if he focuses he can be a formidable player but it is evident to anyone who is paying ANY attention that he cannot do this long term in Cinci anymore. The coach/QB/owner relationship with Chad is irrevocably damaged. The boundaries are NOT there.

    As for the buffoonery here and elsewhere about trading Carson and starting someone like Andrew Luck, I can’t help but want to bang my head against the wall. Carson can overcome a mediocre (I am being generous) pass rush protecting line, or a suffering running game for lack of a full back, or even a missed route or two, but NOT EVERYTHING together. Flashes of what he can/could be, if his receivers do the things they are supposed to do, can be seen on display every week.

  23. By mwindle1973 on Dec 29, 2010 | Reply

    @ tepidfan31

    See I’m just the opposite. I want to win out against Baltimore, so we can move down the draftboard. Also keep in mind they will use this seasons records to determine SOS, not last seasons. I know going into the Browns game we were #1 in SOS at .598. About .022 above the closest team. It’s likely we remain there.

    But really I hope we fall to about the 9th pick. IMO, the best place to pick is from about 12-18. That’s the best talent to value ratio. That’s where you find your Leon Halls, your Derrelle Revis guys. Top 5 picks are busts literally half the time.

    Either way I think we have to look at the Oline or Dline, or if not then a pure athelete and playmaker like Peterson. But definately feel that drafting a WR would be a big mistake. There is no position other than QB where you roll the dice more with an early pick than WR.

  24. By looking4sb1 on Dec 29, 2010 | Reply

    I’m in total agreement with you, Windle. In addition to what you said, it seems that under-performing teams can usually build on wins at the end of the season and carry that momentum into the next season. It’s never good to try to lose any game just to move up the draft board — that only further instills a losing culture.

  25. By bengalmaniac on Dec 29, 2010 | Reply

    @ mwindle1973

    I agree with you, the picks that high are way too expensive and with our draft history I wouldn’t trust MB to make the right pick. I would not draft a QB there are plenty of high quality guys that you can pick up. If Carolina does draft Luck (I personally do not think he comes out) then chances are Clausen & Pike are probably made available because they will hold on to Matt Moore. Either one of those two would be great options here to learn behind Carson. Clausen played an NFL style offense at ND and rocked it and Pike being from here would be a great story. Clausen’s problem in Carolina is that they have no offensive line and he was running for his life most of the time.

  26. By tepidfan31 on Dec 29, 2010 | Reply

    I just don’t know!
    I think that the OL needs a left guard, but I don’t know! I thought Cook would be the answer at center, but I just don’t know! I think that Simpson and Caldwell can be starters, but I just don’t know! I think that we really need safetys, but I just don’t know! I think that Johnson and Dunlop can be our pass rushers of the future, but I just don’t know! I think that we have to replace Tank, but I just don’t know! However I do believe that resigning Joseph, along with Hall and Jones, solidifies our DBs, but I just don’t know! I do believe that trading Chad and not signing TO are the right moves, but I just don’t know! I don’t think we need a RB, but I just don’t know! I think we need a replacement sometime at QB, but when, I just don’t know! I think that Andrea Smith has to prove himself at RT, but I just don’t know! I wonder about the quality of our LB’s, but I just don’t know. I think that we need a RG, but when, I don’t know! What I do know is that Gresham, Shipley, Whitworth, Joseph, Hall, Adam Jones, Benson, Peko, and probable Carson, Scott, Simms, Huber, Ndudkwe, and Muckelroy are good players, but I just don’t know! I wonder about the future of guys like Odoms, Gaethers, etc., but I just don’t know!
    I do think that we have to replace Brat and Alexander, but I just don’t know! Do we need a new head coach, I just don’t know! Do we need a new personnel department and/or a GM, I believe we do, but I just don’t know! Does MB have to relinquish all decision making relative to personnel, I emphatically say YES! Does MB have to build a covered practice field at his expense from all his profits year after year, absolutely Yes!
    Like most fans, it simply don’t know the inter-workings to really know. All I do know is that the Patriots are successful with trading and with late round draft choices year after year.

  27. By tepidfan31 on Dec 29, 2010 | Reply

    Response to mwiddle, Looking 4sbi
    I never suggested that you play to lose, I suggested that I hope that we lose. Ask any personnel department in the league whether they would prefer to have a fourth selection in each round or a ninth selection in each round. A fourth round selection is valuable, in that there are several teams, who would like to have your choice. So, if you are not certain that your selection will be a pro bowler, you can trade down, ala like the Patriots usually do, and will gain probably two early round draft choices, while retaining the fourth position in subsequent rounds. I actually believe that the Bengals will beat the Ravens, but I hope that they do not. To those who say “a win builds on next year”, I say that it’s bunk; it might be against a team that either has their playoff position secured, or is playing out the string, for example the Ravens, if the Steelers are killing the Browns. Also, if you win, it gives a team a false belief that they are better than they are; which has happened in other Bengal years, deluded into thinking that significant changes are not needed. The fourth position is valuable in either a trade or a pick. But like many of you say, with MB, any pick is risk!

  28. By rparr32 on Dec 30, 2010 | Reply

    @ looking4sb1

    I never stated anything about getting rid of Carson Palmer. I was simply stating that he was not an elite QB, he is a good QB. He is worth keeping around as you said. The team needs to get a QB in the draft to have groomed for the future. There is no worthy QB backing him up, and that is a major problem given his injury history. My argument is with the coaches and the cancer in the locker room. Good teams have players that are team oriented, and they are not selfish. Ochocinco pouts constantly, and everyone knows that can drain a teams will to win. It is not about how many balls are thrown to you, pressuring your QB to throw you the ball. It is about doing your job; blocking, running the right routes, and making an effort to catch the ball. I think that a logical decision would be to trade Ocho, cut marvin and BOB, hire new head coach and offensive cord, draft QB, defensive lineman, safety, offensive lineman. Resign cedric benson, let go of odom (injury pron) and geathers (give those positions to Mjohnson and Dunlap) resign J joe No franchis tag and draft a good kicker and pick up a worthy backup QB through free agency, Jpalmer and the other back up muct go to make room for the rookie and backup through free agency.

  29. By mwindle1973 on Dec 30, 2010 | Reply

    Does anybody know where Odom’s contract is at? I really think we have to consider letting him go. Geathers I’m not convinced on. Because he does a lot of the dirty work for the other lineman. A lot of slanting in, etc. He is a great run defender. Probably the best on the line other than Peko.

    But I agree Dunlap is the future at LDE. IDK guys there’s a lot of arguments for changes here and there, and no changes here or there. Draft this position, draft that position, etc, etc. It’s hard to say who’s right though. Truthfully there are probably several ways to go about fixing things that would work.

    I just know I’m absolutely dying to see what’s going to happen. Word is from Marvin we will know a lot more about his status at the first of next week. And that will start to give us a hint at what may happen from there. It sounds like both parties still have issues with each other. But it still seems that they are willing to hash it out. Will know soon enough.

  30. By 4stringking on Dec 31, 2010 | Reply

    I can’t believe how many people want to see the Bengals lose so they are assured the 4th pick. Why, so we can have a guy come in and hold out for most of camp and have a waste of his first season? If the do have a top 5 pick I would love to see Adrian Clayborn on the bengals D – Line. Just imagine the problems this defense could cause with Dunlap and Clayborn on opposite ends. Both guys are big enough to move inside and then Johnson could be used in passing situations as a rush end. They also would have the flexibilty to line up in a 3-4 with Dunlap and Clayborn at the ends and Johnson rushing off the edge. I think Johnson could be as devastating off the edge as Bart Scott was with the Ravens. If they do end up with the 9th pick I happen to believe Da’quan Bowers will still be available. If they get lucky Robert Quinn will be there. I think if they can get him still at no. 9 it would be a gift they better not refuse. Any of those guys would be a great help for this team. They could even get lucky and pick up one of the 2 top safeties in the second round. I don’t know about any one else, but as bad as this season was, and it was excrutiating, I’m excited about whats to come for these bengals. Losing Chad and T.O. is addition by subtraction and there is enough young talent here to build a continuous playoff contender.

  31. By tepidfan31 on Jan 1, 2011 | Reply

    A New Years prediction. Lewis stays and gets a few concessions, Brat leaves, Ocho leaves, TO doesn’t come back, Joseph and Benson iffy, Carson stays, and we draft a safety, a guard, and a WR.

  32. By whodey895 on Jan 3, 2011 | Reply

    you people are pathetic, Carson has to go he has been horrible all year and the only reason he has been playing better is he knows his days are numbered in cincy, he hasn’t been the same since he went down in the pittsburgh game, also he should have had surgery on his elbow, and he knew and so did the organization!! Also you want to sit here and say chad and T.O. should go, why don’t you go back and re-watch all the games this year because if it wasn’t for TO we would have not been in more than half the games we were in this year, you really think a guy like Jerome who hasn’t been able to line up and play for 3 yrs. now is the guy who’s is supposed to lead us. If mike brown has any sense he would keep marvin and release full control to him, so that he can make the changes that need to be made, Brat needs to be released, Look at the successful teams in the NFL the head coach has control, that has not happen in Cincy and until that happens this team will go nowhere

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