Going 11-5 and winning your division, while going undefeated at home, sounds like a really good season. But that outlook changes, when you throw in the hidden facts about the Cincinnati Bengals. Such as: a 3-5 record on the road, a third straight first round playoff elimination, and a fan base that is done with”really good’ seasons. Then, doubts begin to arise.
Every team has their doubts; especially the teams who fall short of their super bowl aspirations. Coaching staffs and front offices for each of those teams understand there has to be room for improvement. They spend all offseason scrambling to figure out what went wrong, and how to fix the problems.
General Manager Mike Brown and Head Coach Marvin Lewis answered the call this offseason. With the help of the othe Cincinnati Bengals execs, Lewis and Brown have worked night and day in an effort to avoid a fourth straight season without a playoff victory.
Here are five reasons they will do just that:
1. New gameplan- With the exit of both coordinators during the offseason, the Cincinnati Bengals’ newly appointed play callers plan to be very aggressive in their styles next season. That could mean more points, and more forced turnovers.
2. Darqueze Dennard- The first round pick out of Michigan State is an extremely skilled cornerback. His ability to stay connected to his man and make big plays when the ball gets there, will be a great asset to the Bengals’ defense next season.
3. Andy Dalton- After a horrible performance in last years wildcard game, Dalton was brutally criticized for his poor play and lack of leadership. Expect to see tthe quarterback play with a chip on his shoulder, and enter next season more prepared than he has ever been.
4. Jeremy Hill- Hill is a powerful runningback, standing at 6’1 235 pounds. His 1,401 yards on the ground ranks second in LSU history. The Louisiana native is a workhorse, and when you combine his makeup with that of second year runningback Giovani Bernard, Cincinnati’s running game becomes much more dominant than before.
5. Experience- The three most important guys on the Cincinnati Bengals’ roster, AJ Green, Vontaze Burfict, and Andy Dalton all have another year of football under their belts. They are some of the most talented young guys we have in the league right now. Green and Dalton have given many defenses nightmares, and Burfict was the leagues leading tackler last season. Its hard to believe these players have yet to reach their ceiling, but they have just barely scratched the surface of their potential.