The Cincinnati Bengals are coming off a disastrous 2016 campaign that saw them finish with just six wins and miss out on the playoffs for the first time since 2010.
They are also seemingly at a crossroads with head coach Marvin Lewis’ contract set to expire following the 2017 season. This is the same situation Cincinnati found itself in last winter before they signed Lewis to a one-year extension.
Speaking at the Senior Bowl, Lewis himself addressed his contract. More than that, he openly suggested that he’s looking for an extension this offseason.
“We’d like to agree to something at some point,” Lewis said, via the Cincinnati Enquirer. “It puts, I think, everybody’s mind at ease going forward for their futures. A lot of the people in the building, it makes it easier on them.”
There’s a couple issues with this. First off, Cincinnati’s brass didn’t seem intent on handing out a long-term deal to Lewis following a 2015 season that saw the team win 12 games and earn the AFC North title.
Secondly, there’s definitely a train of thought out there suggesting that Lewis has worn out his welcome in Cincinnati. He’s the second longest-tenured head coach in the NFL. He’s also failed to lead Cincinnati to a single playoff win in 14 seasons. That includes seven consecutive postseason losses.
It’s safe to say that while Lewis might want an extension, the loyal Bengals’ front office might be more willing to play out the 2017 season with him as a lame duck. And really, you can’t blame them.