The American Football League granted Paul Brown and the ownership team he commanded permission to add an additional team to the AFL. The city originally had a professional football team around from 1937-1942. But the attack on Pearl Harbor quickly suspended the season, which leads to the dismantlement of the team. Twenty-six years later and after paying an $8 million expansion fee, the city once again had its professional team. The choice to name the team the Bengals are credited to the city’s past, Brown’s roots as a high school coach, and the world-renowned Cincinnati Zoo.
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For the first few years of the franchise, the Bengals called the University of Cincinnati’s Nippert Stadium home. It would not be until 1970 when the franchise would move to Riverfront Stadium. Since then, the bitter rivalry nicknamed the “Battle of Ohio” between Cleveland and Cincinnati was born. The current rivalry favors the Bengals who sit comfortably leading the Browns 48-39.
There are also rumors that surround the color choices of the uniforms for the new team. When Paul Brown posted an amazing record of 158-48-8 as the head coach of the Cleveland Browns. However, when the team was bought by Art Modell in 1962, Modell quickly removed the coach that helped find the Browns. Modell’s famous words “This can never be my team as long as you’re here” would stick with Brown. However, Modell made one mistake: don’t fire the guy that owns your team’s equipment. So when Brown left, he took the equipment, and team colors, with him. Eventually, the team upgraded their uniform and colors in 1981.
Since their induction into the NFL, the Bengals have made the playoffs fourteen times. The Bengals have nine Division championships, five AFC Central and four AFC North, and two AFC Conference championships. The Bengals have appeared in Super Bowl XXIII and Super Bowl XVI, both against the San Francisco 49ers. However, the Bengals would have their cinderella stories dashed losing both times. Currently, the Bengals are one of sixteen teams without a Super Bowl championship. The Bengals currently reside at Paul Brown Stadium, named after the legendary founder and first head coach, Paul Brown.