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Archive for the ‘Cincinnati Bengals’ Category

I’m Just Happy To Be Here

Posted by Matt on March 5, 2009

coles_jersey090305-1

“Stone Cold” Marvin Lewis was stoic as usual during the formal introduction of Laveranues Coles as a Bengal.  If the writing isn’t on the wall then Marv’s face at least paints the picture and I think he knows as well as we do that it ain’t looking rosey.

That is the face of a beaten man.

Posted in Cincinnati Bengals, NFL | Comments Off on I’m Just Happy To Be Here

Bengals Musings

Posted by Matt on March 5, 2009

cedric-benson-mugshot-thumb

Very much contradictory to my half-drunken predictions, the Bengals have resigned Cedric Benson to go along with Lavernezilli Coles signing in what are now the marquee moves for Cincinnati this offseason. All must be right in the Bengal Nation.  Bengal-mania is back!  WHO DEY!

Well, probably not, but I like to look at the bandwagon as having a revolving door to fit my needs.

-Hanoi Hobson’s old school spin.

Not quite sure how I missed this one last week but my current level of excitement cannot be contained so much that I have been trolling Bengals.com all morning and looking specifically at the wide receiver situation.  On February 23, Hanoi had this to say about Jerry Simpson:

“I know a lot of people inside and outside the Bengals fear Simpson is a bust but, to his great credit, Lewis has always backed Simpson to the hilt. So much so that Lewis seemed to be coaxing Palmer to get more in Simpson’s camp.

All I know is this: In 20 preseason and regular-season games last year, only one wide receiver actually made a downfield catch longer than 40 yards, and it was Simpson. Forget it was the preseason and it was a throwaway launched by and into a bunch of second-half backups. The kid jumped up and made a play, and that exactly hasn’t been happening around here.”

Yeah, please forget that 40+ yard catch was in the American Legion’s annual Celebrity Flag Football Game For The Cure and Jerry was being hilariously covered by local “celeb” Nick Lachey in the short-nonathletic-white-dude-competes-against-large-athletic-black-man irony that the average American loves.  Simpson (“Largest WR hands at the 2008 NFL Combine!”) had 1 reception for 2 yards the entire season.  True story.

I think Brett Favre had that in his first completion with Green Bay and last I heard he wasn’t a wide receiver nor was he coming out of retirement (yet).

-Bengals fans are collectively retarded. — My apologies to the retarded, being compared to a Bengals fan really paints those folks in a bad light.

Today’s fan poll on Bengals.com begs the question, “What do you think of the Laveranues Coles signing?” and 71% went with “Great move – now we have a deep corps  of receivers (Ed.’s Note: Citation needed.)“.  23.9% said, “It’s OK — doesn’t wow me either way (Ed.’s Note: That’s what she said.)while 5.9% decided that it was a “Bad move — he’s no TJ”.

Let me preface my belligerent ramblings by saying I have no problems with Laveranues Coles and I actually didn’t mind the signing overall.  He seems like a class act, something that has been a rarity in recent history, and 4 of the last 5 seasons he has somehow found a way on to my fantasy team, with me having no recollection of actually drafting him or picking him up from the waiver wire, and performed sufficiently. (I will also add to the preface that a fourth choice of “It is a decent signing but the offensive line is still shitty” is a conspicuously absent option from the fan poll.)

However, the 71% of fans that are overly enthusiastic about the signing of Coles are indicative of a fan base that goes through life looking through orange-colored lenses and it really chaps my ass.  These are the same delusional human beings that buy in to the “Bengals finished strong” argument because the team went 4-3-1 in the last 8 games despite the fact the 4 wins were against divisional bottom-feeders with a combined .297 winning percentage.

I witnessed this problem up close in training camp last summer.  The exact same fans would show up every day covered in Bengals schwag from head to toe, begging for autographs from players half their age as if proving their blind, undying loyalty makes them better people than their unemployed reality portrays.  These are the same mongrels that show up every Sunday to Paul Brown Stadium, rain or shine, and plop their fat asses in uncomfortable chairs with their overpriced cheese coneys and $9 beers, helping to ensure that Mike Brown will have to change very little to continue making his millions.

-Please, please, PLEASE don’t use high draft picks on a running back or wide receiver.

Especially not after drafting three wide receivers last year (Simpson/Caldwell/Urrutia) and signing another one as a college free agent (Maurice Purify).  Benson and company in the backfield plus any combination of Ocho Cinco/Coles/Henry/Simpson/Your Mom may not be the best offense in the league, but the Bengals have far more pressing issues at this point than the skill positions.

Mr. Hobson initially agrees that the Benson/Coles signings will free up the draft for Cincinnati but quickly returns to usual form by claiming that wide receiver Michael Crabtree is still an option, especially now that Seattle has addressed their needs with Houshmazoad:

“The Bengals have plenty of needs, but they don’t have a gaping hole that they must fill with the No. 6 or No. 38 picks. Particularly at No. 6, where they can now take anything, and that includes Texas Tech wide receiver Michael Crabtree if he slips because of his foot stress fracture. But, if someone wants to jump and get Crabtree, now the Bengals have the luxury of trading down if they want to talk turkey at No. 6.

(Seattle, picking at No. 4, is presumably out of the receiver sweepstakes now that Houshmandzadeh is in the fold.)”

Heh, he said ‘gaping hole’. But seriously, the Bengals have needs and I know of one gaping hole in particular and it is wherever Eric Ghiaciuc lines up (or doesn’t if he doesn’t resign).

If the Bengals spend the #6 overall selection on a guy with a bum leg when they now have 8 wide receivers to take to training camp (plus any invitees), and with former Bengals Tab Perry and Kelley Washington still on the market, I may just turn to illicit drug use to ease the pain — otherwise known as “Weekday Mornings” in my household.

Posted in Cincinnati Bengals, NFL | 1 Comment »

What We’ve Learned About The Bengals (So Far) From Free Agency

Posted by Matt on March 3, 2009

titanic_sinking

See the lifeboats in the lower left?  Yeah, that’s Stacy Andrews and TJ Housyourmamma getting the hell out of town and  don’t be surprised if Cedric Benson is soon to follow.  But what does this mean and what have we truly learned about the Bengals during the free agency period thus far?

-The Bengals were never legitimately in the mix for Housh.

Call me crazy but I am a broke college student and I don’t think I’d take a guaranteed contract to play for the Bengals; this franchise is a joke. Don’t get me wrong, I fully support the endeavors of Who Dey Revolution, but we’re a fan base that has resorted to sneaking in urinal cakes to Paul Brown Stadium documenting Mike Brown’s inferiority.

Carson’s constant phone calls tugging at the proverbial heartstrings of TJ only delayed the decision.  Seattle is a (marginally) better team in a weaker division offering more money to bring TJ closer to home.  Book it.  Done.

-Cedric Benson may soon follow.

You better get used to a 2009 edition of the Bengals lacking any offensive line depth along with playing sans our top receiver and (possibly) top running back from 2008.  Although Cedric Benson has taken enough police beatings to lack cognitive thought, he somehow still had the presence of mind to know that the Bengals are on a one way trip to Hell when he spoke with The Houston Chronicle:

“There’s a lot of things like staying home, and the business side of it here might be better than it is in Cincinnati,” he said. “Also, winning a Super Bowl. I had an opportunity to go (with Chicago), and I want to get back and win one.”

Ah yes, the hometown comes-a-calling excuse once more.  And the Bengals business side is shitty. Oh, and he’ll never win a Super Bowl in Cincinnati, either.

This guy was selling steaks out of a rapist van to cover court costs at the start of last season before signing with Cincy; but now, after less than one year with the Bengals, Ced would rather take a backup role to Steve Slaton in Houston than start for our loveable losers.

-Other teams’ free agents use the Bengals to catch a free flight through the Mid-west.

Giants’ free agent running back Derrick Ward visited Cincinnati over the weekend — a move that likely only further drove the wedge between Benson and the Bengals — only to sign with Buccaneers a day later.  I doubt Ward was ever seriously considering Cincinnati despite what Hanoi Hobson on Bengals.com would have you believe.

Instead of signing with the Bengals I picture Ward’s agent, Drew Rosenhaus, with his feet up on Mike Brown’s desk finalizing the details of the deal with Tampa Bay while Mike Brown “wined-and-dined” Ward with a Skyline 3-way and a Big Gulp.

rob_feet_up_on_desk

You’d think the rest of the league would catch on to the fact that Bengals will likely sign NOBODY, but it seems clear free agents are still content ‘taking a visit’ to try to improve their market value before bolting for higher ground.

-The Brown Family is asleep at the wheel.

The Bengals have resigned just three crucial pieces to the Bengals’ “success” last year:  Chris “Leave Britney alone!” Crocker, DeDe Dorsey, and Darryl Blackstock.  They let Stacy Andrews walk — the guy they sent Willie Anderson packing for with nothing in return, and Stacy only had a 1 year deal at the time — and they have yet to sign a center or improve the depth on either side of the trenches.

But by God, they’ve franchised a kicker.

Posted in Cincinnati Bengals, NFL | 5 Comments »

Haynesworth Signs $100M Deal, Dark Days Loom For Bengals

Posted by Charlie Hustle on February 27, 2009

nfl_ap_haynesworth_195

Albert Haynesworth signed with the Washington Redskins today for a reported 7 years, $100 million which, with incentives, can be as high as $115 million. This marks the first time a non-quarterback has reached a contract worth over the $100 million mark.

No strange territory for the Redskins. They try to buy a championship every year by trading draft picks away and signing high-priced free agents. As always kids, the lesson is:

Stomp a man in the head without a helmet on in the middle of an NFL game and get rich bitch!

But dark days looming for Bengals you ask? Well the move by the Redskins adding such immense payroll clearly indicates a feeling amongst Dan Snyder & Co. that the current Collective Bargaining Agreement (aka salary cap) that expires after 2009 ,will go the way of the dinosaur.

If the CBA were to expire and no salary cap reinstated, billionaires like Snyder and Dallas’ Jerry Jones could turn the NFL into Yankees/RedSox 2.0. This is bad news for penny pinchers like Mike Brown who use their “Franchise Tag” for a kicker.

With the track record of the Bengals’ drafts looking more like inept baseball franchises like the Reds and Royals, not low-budget winners like the Rays and As, the Bengals could be in for another 20 years of losing.

As always, my condolences Carson.

c_palmer_080823_qt

— Charlie Hustle

Posted in Cincinnati Bengals, NFL | 2 Comments »

The Return Of The Squirrel?

Posted by Matt on February 20, 2009

kelley_washington_2

The dancin’ machine known as Kelley Washington — famous for “The Squirrel” — may be making a return to Cincinnati, the place where his smooth moves all began back in 2003.  Washington, a free agent, and his representative Chad Speck have reached out to Bengals Management at the NFL Combine and the interest is apparently mutual yet not expressed.

“There is a mutual interest but there hasn’t been any talk about a visit or anything like that. We’ll be talking,” said Speck, a popular man since he’s also the agent for the top player on the free-agent market in Titans defensive tackle Albert Haynesworth.

Oh, wow, wouldn’t it be nice if the Three Stooges (Mike Brown, Katie Blackburn, & Troy Blackburn) were linked with Speck for a guy like, oh say, ALBERT HAYNESWORTH instead of a guy who has caught one pass for three yards in two years with the New England Patriots? Don’t get me wrong, I think Washington is an entertaining character and he had some mild success in spot play and excelled on special teams when he was in Cincinnati, but when will the Bengals land an exciting free agent without botching the contract terms? (*ahem* Shuan Rogers)

Unfortunately for Bengals’ Fans the wide receiver position quickly became a weakness (please don’t use a first round pick, please don’t use a first round pick) when Bengals Management used the Franchise Tag on a kicker and Drew Rosenhaus began pimping out Ocho Cinco like a top call girl.  Jerry Simpson (“Biggest hands in the Combine!”) has been useless and Chris Henry is soft so I understand where concern could blossom but Palmer won’t have to worry about who is on the other end of those receiving routes if he’s on his back more times each game than Pam Anderson on a Motley Crue tour bus.

Heyooo!  I’ll be here all night, folks — don’t forget to tip your bartenders.

Linkage: Bengals.com

Posted in Cincinnati Bengals, NFL | Comments Off on The Return Of The Squirrel?

Bengals Choose Graham Over Janitor For Franchise Tag

Posted by Matt on February 18, 2009

5854

After weeks of speculation the Captain of the Titanic Bengals’ management did what we all long feared on Monday:  used the Franchise Tag on “Sugar” Shayne Graham.  What’s worse is everybody expected it.  John Thorton called it on his blog.  The geniuses over at WhoDey Revolution have been speculating this move for weeks.  Yet none of it prepared me for the stinging pain that shot through my head (Ed. Note: Could’ve been the hangover.) when I heard that Cincy had officially tagged a kicker.

Sure Shayne is great for the community and “Hanoi” Hobson’s spin zone seems to lean on his philanthropy as a valid reason to keep Graham around.  By all means don’t allow me to rain on anybody’s parade — Kicks for Kids is a GREAT campaign (ahem: started by Kentucky alum Doug Pelfrey) — but if we’re giving out top five salaries because of a little charity work I’ll have you know I recently donated hefty sums of money to a worthwhile college fund for some stripper’s kids.

Tagging a kicker isn’t unprecedented.  The Broncos have tagged Jason Elam in the past and the Seahawks have done the same to Josh Brown.  Shayne-o-Mac isn’t even the lone kicker tagged this year in a group that includes punter Michael Koenen out of Atlanta and Jason Hanson out of Detroit (0-16, solid company).  I also would care a little bit less if Graham was our lone high profile free agent this year, but he’s not and the Bengals also aren’t a few field goals away from being a contender.

Cincy has holes on both lines and has the best possession/third down wide receiver in the NFL today sitting on the cusp of free agency and they tag a kicker.  Even if Housh wants no part of coming back to Cincy and the Bengals’ feeling is mutual, tag him and decline to match an offer so the team receives first round draft picks in the 2009 AND 2010 drafts.

After locking up their kicker for at least another year — even though they can’t get INTO field goal range to begin with — “Hanoi” Hobson claims the Bengals will “jump in to the fray” for TJ once free agency begins but I can only imagine they’ll offer about as much money as I’d be offered as a male prostitute.  Then again, what do I know?

Clearly not as much as this widely successful managerial staff…

Linkage: Bengals.com

Posted in Cincinnati Bengals, NFL | Comments Off on Bengals Choose Graham Over Janitor For Franchise Tag

The Bengals Finished “Strong”

Posted by Matt on February 15, 2009

Charlie Hustle and I started referring to Bengals’ website propaganda puppet Geoff Hobson, pictured (dramatization), as “Hanoi Hobson” a long ways back due to his seemingly sympathizing ways towards the Brown Family communist regime, efforts that would make Jane Fonda proud.  I understand it must be hard writing about a team as perpetually bad as the Bengals but sometimes Hanoi paints the picture so rosey I even begin to believe that Cincinnati has two Super Bowls in four years instead of Shitsburgh.

The offseason plays out no differently:

“…Which pretty much summed up many of Fitzpatrick’s 12 starts in place of the injured Carson Palmer. Just not enough firepower from anyone. But he did lead his team to a 4-3-1 finish and he did play Brett Favre to a virtual stat standstill.”

Ah yes, that undeniably impressive 4-3-1 finish with the four wins coming against teams that finished the season a combined 19-45 (.297) and all placed last in their respective divisions.  Granted the Eagles went on to play in the NFC Championship game but they do that every year and suggesting that tie is a bright spot on the season is like the guy pictured above suggesting his celibacy is a choice.  Philly was in disarray at the time and the game was simply atrocious all around.  And what the hell is “a virtual stat standstill” anyway?  We’re left to brag about draws against washed up gunslingers?

My head hurts.

I’m sure there’s more, such as referring to Fitzpatrick’s quarterback-sneaks-where-he-forgets-to-slide as “classic, quick thinking plays”, but there isn’t enough alcohol in the house today to ease the pain.

Linkage: Bengals.com

Posted in Cincinnati Bengals, NFL | Comments Off on The Bengals Finished “Strong”

Charlie Hustle’s Bengals Quotes Of The Day

Posted by Matt on December 7, 2008

Ed.’s Note: This is what takes place in the head of the legendary Charlie Hustle…

“Cedric Benson…running with all the passion of a crack addict.”

“The Bengals are tackling Dominic Rhodes like he has AIDS.”

Updates:

“Even back in the Jeff Blake days it was exciting because of the bomb to Pickens or Darnay Scott.  Fitzy Kirkpatrick shits his pants if he has to throw it more than 20 yards.”

Ed.’s Note #2: I am sure there will be more to come throughout today…

Posted in Cincinnati Bengals, NFL | Tagged: , , | Comments Off on Charlie Hustle’s Bengals Quotes Of The Day

A Day In The Life…

Posted by Matt on November 20, 2008

Wednesday, November 19, 2008 — Somewhere within Bengals Compound.invincible4

10:15AM – 34 hours until Bengals/Steelers game:

A package arrives for Mr. Mike Brown to 1 Paul Brown Stadium, Cincinnati, Ohio 45202. It’s a Netflix envelope. Millions of desperate fans now realize where money for a premier scouting department goes. The flick? Invincible starring Mark Wahlberg as Philadelphia Eagle “walk-on” Vince Papale.

12:00PM – 32 hours, 15 minutes until Bengals/Steelers game:

Credits are rolling for Invincible

Mike Brown: “Brilliant! Get me Papale’s agent. If a guy with such gusto can walk-on for Coach Vermeil in Philadelphia we need to make a move for him by tomorrow night’s game against the Pittsburgh Steelers at 8:15PM exclusively on the NFL Network!”

Apparently Mr. Brown has resorted to product placement advertisement even within his own Front Office. NFL Network pays him $1,000 for every mention. Proceeds go to his daughter’s extensive wardrobe of man-clothes:

katie_zoom Mike Brown: “If their quarterback is dumb enough to not know that there are ties in the NFL we should have no problem trading David Pollack for Vince Papale straight up. Hell, even I knew there are ties and I don’t know a damn thing about football. I will say, however, that I’ve been managing for ties my entire career because it is like I’ve always said, a tie is better than anything else!”

1:15PM – 31 hours until Bengals/Steelers game:

At his daily press conference Marvin Lewis explains his team’s recent struggles.

Marvin Lewis: “Has anybody seen the movie Major League? Mr. Brown let me borrow it off of his Netflix queue, he’s a big Charlie Sheen fan. God, I love Netflix. Anyways, the movie inspired what I thought would be one of my more brilliant coaching strategies for the start of this season. I have always gotten my best coaching schemes from Hollywood, it is why I have a robust .483 professional winning percentage. This strategy has only failed me once, apparently you can’t get angels in the endzone. I thought it was worth a shot. Anyways, about this year. So after watching Major League I decided to install a cardboard stand-up of Katie Blackburn in the locker-room and I told the guys that every time we won a game I would peel off an article of clothing…just like in Major League. Obviously this hasn’t gone over too well…we’re 1-8-1; it seems most of the team would rather the cardboard Blackburn keep her clothes on. Carson actually vomited. So that one is on me, I take full responsibility.”

4:00PM – 28 hours, 15 minutes until Bengals/Steelers game:

Vince Papale, now 62 years old and ravaged by dementia, reports to Bengals Compound confused and slightly intoxicated. Mike Brown has never been more excited by a league-minimum signing.

In the meantime, Fifth-Third Bank has frozen Mr. Brown’s account and put a hold on Papale’s paycheck. Even the seemingly-yet-not-admittedly gay bank teller thinks that the acquisition must be some kind of joke and that someone must have stolen a book of checks from Bengals Compound and forged Mr. Brown’s signature. Many Bengals fans are left to wonder why a similar observation hasn’t occurred sooner.

6:30PM – 25 hours, 45 minutes until Bengals/Steelers game:

Team dinner is promptly served by recently signed lineman/linecook Digger Bujnoch and his family’s catering business, Booj’s. Mike Brown is as giddy as as school girl over the ability to get two services out of Bujnoch for the price of one and begins wondering if Chris Henry would be interested in selling Dippin’ Dots in the stands during defensive drives.

Patting himself on the back for another cost-cutting maneuver done well and unable to dine thanks to a potent case of irritable bowel syndrome, Mr. Brown retires to his quarters with a bottle of Metamucil and the latest Clay Aiken CD. The team leaves town for Pittsburgh shortly thereafter.mv5bmjezmdyymju4nf5bml5banbnxkftztywotixnzu5_v1_sx245_sy400_

Thursday, November 20, 2008 — Somewhere within Bengals Compound.

6:30AM – 13 hours, 45 minutes until Bengals/Steelers game:

Feeling refreshed and rested from the night’s sleep, Mr. Brown settles in his office for his morning coffee while Akili Smith massages BENGAY in to his boss’ aching and aging muscles. Reading the regional newspapers each morning with a cup of joe is always a treat for Mikey; it allows him to revisit each and everyday how well-received he is as team owner in the Cincinnati area.

10:00AM – 10 hours, 15 minutes until Bengals/Steelers game:

A virtual off-day for the Front Office with the team en route to Pittsburgh, Mr. Brown begins the search for more bargain-basement players to pad his lineup and his resume. It takes little time for a scavenger of Brown’s caliber to realize that Philadelphia has more to offer than just a walk-on wide receiver.

Mike Brown: “I want the ‘garbage picking field goal kicking Philadelphia phenomenon’ and I want him now! If the Eagles were dumb enough to give up Papale for pennies on the dollar, Barney Gorman should be virtually free. I’ll see to it that the league’s most accurate active kicker Shayne Graham never boots another field goal for this team the rest of his career! (shouting to son Paul) Tell ’em will give ’em Odell Thurman and a tub of Bujnoch’s cole slaw! (snickering)”

1:45PM – 6 hours, 30 minutes until Bengals/Steelers game:

Katie Blackburn begins to salivate after watching the “Palumalu Island” promo for the 17th consecutive time while relaxing on her bed.

Katie Blackburn: “God a Troy Palumalu is sooo much sexier than a Troy Blackburn with that flowing Samoan hair. I can’t wait for the Steelers to make the playoffs this year. I know who I’m rooting for: The Pittsburgh Steelers. The one time I root for the teams in our division is when they are in the playoffs. Did I mention how dreamy Troy Palumalu is? I picked the wrong Troy.”

Meanwhile, in Pittsburgh, upon receiving a provocative text message from Bengals Executive Vice President Katie Blackburn, Troy Palumalu vomits a little bit in his mouth.

5:15PM – 3 hours until Bengals/Steelers game:

Marvin Lewis address his team before heading out to complete walk-throughs, warm-ups, and pregame ceremonies.

Marvin Lewis: “Ask not what your team can do for you; ask what you can do for your team. I have a dream that tonight this team will rise up and live out the true meaning of being a Cincinnati Bengal. And after the fight has ended, I hope to stand before you as your leader and declare one thing: Mission Accomplished. Gentlemen I want you to remember one thing tonight: a victory is one small step for this season, but one giant leap for seasons to come. So go out there and give it all you’ve got and win just one for the Gipper because blessed are the victors; for they shall inherit the Division. Amen.”

7:00PM – 1 hour, 15 minutes until Bengals/Steelers game:

Mr. Brown declined to travel for a Thursday night game in chilly Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania and with pregame coverage commencing, he decides instead to sit down with his latest Netflix arrival. There will be no tuning in to tonight’s contest between his Bengals and the hated Steelers because even Mike Brown is too cheap to pay for the NFL Network.

(Ed.’s Note: Thanks to Charlie Hustle for some inspiration for this complete waste of your time.)

Posted in Cincinnati Bengals, NFL, The Nasty Boys | Tagged: , | 2 Comments »

At Least I Still Have The Bengals…Right?

Posted by Matt on November 19, 2008

Last night’s Kentucky at North Carolina basketball game:

train-wreck

(Dramatization.)

“The Debacle in the Dean Dome.” That’s what they’re calling it.

And by they I mean me.

Kentucky narrowly escaped a mere single-digit loss thanks to 28 turnovers to start the 2008-2009 campaign 0-2 for only the third time in the program’s storied history. North Carolina now sits just 14 wins shy of Kentucky’s all-time mark — the one record Wildcat fans have grabbed at straws with as the glory has faded from this once-dominant regime. A 19-point Tar Heel victory kicked off ESPN’s college basketball coverage with the #1 team in the Nation’s two best players idly watching from the bench as if to say, “the team doesn’t need us for these has-beens.”

I woke up this morning — much like ZRO did post-VMI embarrassment — hoping it was all a bad dream. That the visions of that rat Roy Williams applauding gleefully from the sidelines and Dickie V.’s 18 Duke/Coach K. references were all merely nightmares within the depths of my slumber.

A nightmare it may have been but oh-so-real it was.

I immediately headed for the showers, hoping to wash away the stank of losing and searching for a single glimmer of hope in the coming weeks — and unfortunately it’s not Longwood (that’s what she said) at home next Monday.

In fact, as I stepped out of the shower it dawned on me: at least I still have the Bengals…right?

My much maligned band of nobodies is on a three week non-losing streak. Something that cannot be said about the basketball OR football Wildcats.

Cincy completely bamboozled the Eagles on Sunday, snatching a tie from the jaws of victory after tricking Donovan McNabb in to believing that there were no ties in the NFL, that the next step would be penalty kicks.

Only the Bengals could provide such heart-warming tales like the acquisition of lineman Digger Bujnoch, literally signed out of the West Side of Cincinnati after no other NFL team would have him. A man who once earned a paycheck delivering Salisbury steaks to Mike Brown while working for his parents’ catering company, Booj’s, is now suiting up for the orange and black attack (I can’t make this stuff up).

And it is fitting this holiday season that the Bengals are now staffed primarily by players left behind by teams that lack the foresight of Cincy’s front office as Mike Brown’s heart has grown three sizes this season. The Digger Bujnochs, the Chris Crockers (surprisingly not this Chris Crocker), and even the Cedric Bensons are our very own Island of Misfit Toys a la the Christmas classic Rudolph The Red-Nosed Reindeer.

While I agonize in the state of my basketball Wildcats I still have these Bengals…my Bengals.

No other team could provide the emotional roller coaster ride or the laughs as the Bengals can. No other team could tug at the spirit with stories of sacrifice and redemption…for the 3rd, 4th, and 5th times. And no other team’s best player has gradually grown to resemble Little Richard since his arrival:

littles

So when you’re gathered around the dinner table next week with your families for Thanksgiving, remember what you DO have (Chris Henry and Mike Brown) instead of what you DON’T have (a winning record after two games, ball security, a viable option at point guard, or a sober head coach) because, hey, at least we’re not Louisville fans:

louserville

“Lewisveele!”

Posted in Cincinnati Bengals, Kentucky Wildcats, NCAA Basketball, NFL | Tagged: , | 2 Comments »

A Ransom Note

Posted by Agent Z-Ro on November 4, 2008

Hello, I have something that may be of interest to you. I know Matt will be interested. People have been looking for this for the last 9 weeks, and it was harder to find than the list of women Rex Grossman hasn’t banged. It’s called the Bengals’ season, and I have it in my custody. I hadn’t bought in to the hype, that the complete reversion to the Bungles days were back.

After Palmer went down, things looked downright dreadful and there were echos of the Yuccaneers’ winless season. I saw the 31st overall ranked offense and said,”they are bound to get better any week, they have the tools, they just aren’t putting it together”. But they didn’t and I finally bet on Cincinnati to suck against the Jaguars D.

Then I saw something strange happen on Saturday. Ryan “Fighting Crimson (no really!)” Fitzpatrick did a couple very convincing Mike Vick impersonations and was slinging it all over the field while still averaging less than 10 yards a pass. Chad Ocho Cinco started looking like Chad Johnson, and unsurprisingly started acting like him. They even tried to give the game away at the end, which saved my defensive points this week, yet still couldn’t lose the game. So what sort of bargaining chip do I have in order for this ransom note to be effective?

My fantasy team.

Why does any of this make sense? Because I’m like Neo. For fantasy football. But the other way. I suck at it, really bad, to the point where I have not finished above second to last place for the last two seasons. But mysteriously, as soon as I bank on the orange-and-blacks to suck, they go nuts. So my demands are simple: either Bengals fans pay me and I add defenses that are playing them, saving your season. Or I don’t play the opposing defense and you return to nauseatingly bad.

Maybe some of you will say “Gee, Zach, winning would be nice, but we want the #1 pick. We don’t want to win anymore”.

Bullshit.

I saw how you people got when they had one good year. You got worse than Massholes, when I heard an accent developing every time I listened to some over-privileged white kid bark, “Aye wuz heah since the fahkin staht. We ah the best fans evah!”.

So don’t give me that. You know you want this action, if only to make up for the arrests, suspensions, injuries, internal distractions, morally crushing injuries, and the cuts of two of the people that made up that 2005 team because they didn’t want to pay them out.

If you want to have some dignity, transfer eleventy billion dollars to:

Somefake Bank

Account #: 1234567

I await your reply.

Posted in Cincinnati Bengals, NFL | Tagged: , | 1 Comment »

Quest For Perfection

Posted by Matt on October 30, 2008

The “Mike Brown Urinal Target” coming to a Greater Cincinnati truck stop near you!

The Cincinnati Bungles (henceforth they are to be known only as the “Cincinnati Bungles” until further notice) maintained their quest for perfection on Sunday falling to the Houston Texans 35-6 and in doing so appeared to be, quite possibly, the worst football team in the history of teams. Now the Bungles being shitty is not a new phenomenon — obviously — and at the core of the problem is an 18 year long festering boil that needed to be lanced a long time ago in the form of the tenure of Mike Brown.

Now I’ve thought long and hard on how to verbalize the central issue plaguing the Cincinnati Bungles and how I am relatively sure that it is an unsolvable problem outside of the commissioner of the NFL, Der Fuhrer Goodell, stepping in at some point on the grounds of competitive balance and/or obligation to the fans of Cincinnati.

In the past I have targeted many topics as the basis for the Bungles’ weaknesses:

What I have come to realize is that the issue cannot be narrowed down to one particular culprit and the problem is, however, very deeply rooted in the culture of the organization starting at the very top and reaching deep in to the annals of Paul Brown Stadium.

However, on the surface the problem can be best described by a three-pronged explanation:

  1. Front Office Failure: Cincinnati is one of (I believe) only three teams that operates without a general manager (and thus the owner is the de facto GM) — with the other two teams being the Dallas Cowboys and Oakland Raiders — and it is clear that owner Mike Brown knows little-to-nothing about evaluating football talent. If Mr. Brown was a football genius or he was willing to constantly throw as much money in to the team as needed to field a winner, I would have no problem with this. Obviously, however, neither are the case when it comes to Cincinnati. The Bungles also employ the lowest number of scouts and executives of any team in the NFL.
  2. Keeping It In The Family: Nepotism is certainly not something that Mike Brown can deny since some of his top executives consist of his brother Pete, daughter Katie (Blackburn), son-in-law Troy Blackburn, and son Paul. The rest of the organization is comprised mainly of a host of characters that have befriended Mikey along the way and thus have found themselves in good favor with the organization. The culture will never change if the most important personnel’s ideology never changes and instead only continues to proliferate within the same family.
  3. Bungalization: This may be the hardest to explain but also may be the most detrimental issue at the same time. If it ever appears that there is some sort of curse on the Bungles that is because there is…kind of. I call it the “Bungalization” of players. This means, simply, that either consciously or subconsciously players on the Bungles have bought in to the historical deficiencies of the franchise, as well as their inability to win and win often while in Cincinnati. This effect then shows in the on-field performances without anybody fully realizing that these players are not playing to what their full potential might be with another team, thus giving off the appearance that the Bungles are “cursed.” It is the reciprocal to the reason that the New England Patriots can get more out of an aging player when other teams have left their career for dead. Bungalization then becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy and a self-perpetuating problem in a never ending vicious cycle.

Taking all issues in to account, the three-pronged explanation is the best attempt at condensing the Bungles woes in to three paragraphs but it still doesn’t operationalize everything that is wrong with the franchise. I don’t think that I have failed to fully explain myself but I do believe that a video circling YouTube (and courtesy of The Meaningful Collateral) better explains the subject in a manner that is easier to visualize:

This is the best description of what is ailing this franchise and it comes in the form of a brilliant four minute video. Things may or may not change in Cincinnati with another failed season, unfortunately more likely the latter, but perpetual hope that something will be done to turn things around is the lone driving force that keeps me coming back each season.

But for the time being at least we can see exactly why the current Cincinnati Bungles are on their quest for perfection this season.

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Charlie Hustle’s Question Of The Day

Posted by Matt on October 27, 2008

Ed.’s Note: This gem was left on my desktop by the legendary Charlie Hustle…

What was the biggest reason for Sunday’s 35-6 loss at houston?

A) Marvin is an Exstacy addict and always seems too happy.

B) Mike Brown is secretly down $10 million to his bookie.

C) Ryan Fitzpatrick is Akili Smith in white face.

D) Paul Brown’s ghost hates black coaches.

Posted in Cincinnati Bengals, NFL | Tagged: , | 3 Comments »

Bengal Astrology Points To Cincy Upset

Posted by Matt on October 25, 2008

Yes, I realize just 24 hours ago I wrote off the Bengals and left them for dead.  Literally.  And no, I am not going back on my word — I really do think that Cincinnati has solidified their future of futility.  However, the “Who Dey Horoscopes” are projecting a Bengals victory, for what it’s worth.

The last time the Bengals started 0-7 was during the 2002 campaign. Cincy’s eighth game?  A November 3rd outing against the Houston Texans in the Lone Star State.  The result?  A 38-3 orange and black victory.

Obviously I don’t expect this apparently anemic offense to hang 38 points on Houston while holding them to just a field goal tomorrow in Reliant Stadium.  Mind you, the 2002 Texans were still a hapless expansion franchise and while they haven’t turned the corner much since then, Matt Schaub and Company are a better team now than they were then.  However, I’d be lying if I didn’t say that the coincidence is rather remarkable and at 2-4, the Texans are still not that much better of a team than the Bengals.

The last time quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick played an NFL game in Houston — or a game against the Texans for that matter — was during the 2005 season as a member of the Saint Louis Rams.  The result?  A 33-27 come-from-behind victory in which Fitzy replaced an injured Jamie Martin early in the game and proceeded to go 19-30 for 310 yards and three touchdowns.

The Texans are ranked 17th in passing giving up 216.8 yards per game and nine total touchdowns on the season.  This neither lends itself to a particularly poor or particularly strong performance for the Bengals’ signal caller but with what should be more time in the pocket, Fitzpatrick is poised to post some of the best numbers of he and the Bengals’ slow start.  Cincinnati showed signs of taking down-field shots last week against Pittsburgh and with yet another week of practice as the starter for Fitzpatrick and a defense far less impressive than that of the Steelers, look for this trend to continue (deep passes are the easy part, it remains to be seen when and if they’ll begin to complete them).

The last time running back Cedric Benson was in the state of Texas he was a member of the University of Texas Longhorns.  The result?  5,577 career rushing yards and 64 touchdowns in four seasons and a 4th overall selection of 2005 NFL Draft.

Houston is ranked 22nd in rushing defense giving up 122 yards per game and 11 total touchdowns on the season including at least one rushing score in every game.  If the Bengals’ deficient offensive line can put together an inspired performance this week, Benson and the Cincinnati rushing attack (I’m using the word “attack” loosely) may finally put together a complete game despite being a unit ranked 31st (out of 32 teams) in total rushing offense at 73.9 yards per game.

The late line this week has the Houston Texans as a 9.5 favorites over the Cincinnati Bengals, which comes as no surprise to many with the way The Queen City’s boys have played thus far.  Being favored, however, is still relatively new territory for the Texans — especially this season with their only wins coming against the Miami Dolphins and the also-win less Detroit Lions.

Being new at being favored and playing a team that doesn’t appear to be a winner even at the college level leaves Houston primed for an upset on their home turf.  All of the stars are aligned for the Bengals to notch their first victory in the 2008 calendar year, despite the spread, because as the old adage goes, even a blind squirrel finds a nut every once in a while.

(But if the Bengals lose, we can forget I ever said any of this.)

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The Obituary

Posted by Matt on October 24, 2008

tombstone2tBENGALS, Cincinnati. The Bengals, 40, passed away late Sunday night, October 19th, at their home in Paul Brown Stadium in Ohio. The Bengals were preceded in death by patriarch Paul Brown (I), of Ohio, as well as by The Houston Oilers and Anna Nicole Smith, both of Texas. The Bengals fathered one, lone Hall-of-Famer, Anthony Muñoz, 50, of California and were also survived by their owner Mike Brown, 71, of Ohio, along with Katie (Brown) Blackburn, Troy Blackburn, and Paul Brown (II), all also of Ohio, as well as a handful of remaining fans. The Bengals died from a long bout of Internal Cancer despite intermittent years of remission (’73, ’75, ’76, ’81, ’86, ’88, ’90, & ’05) in which they could never quite fully recover. More recently the Bengals acquired additional ailments of Dave Shula, David Klingler, diabetes, Bruce Coslet, Akili Smith, and multiple marijuana possessions that only added to the pain and suffering of their final years on this mortal Earth. Unfortunately for The Bengals, their Internal Cancer came at a time in history when their closest management was unable (or unwilling) to spend the money needed to afford the knowledge and know-how to permanently cure their conditions. Tragically, The Bengals finally left us after succumbing to a three-and-a-half hour battle to the viral Pittsburgh Steelers late Sunday afternoon. Public visitations will be held at their home in Paul Brown Stadium on November 2nd, November 16th, November 30th, December 14th, and December 28th. Final interment will be on the grounds of their property in Ohio and assisting with the formal funeral services as Paul Bearers will be The Jacksonville Jaguars, The Philadelphia Eagles, The Baltimore Ravens, The Washington Redskins, The Kansas City Chiefs, and Bill Cowher. In lieu of flowers, the closest survivors of the departed are asking that donations be made in memory of The Bengals to the Make-A-Wish Foundation, so that one day all terminally ill football teams can experience their dream of a Super Bowl ring, or to the “Mike Brown Sucks Campaign” found here: MikeBrownSucks.com. The Cincinnati Bengals were loved by some, envied by a few, and better than none. R.I.P., 2008.

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Maybe Bengals Management Actually Knew Something We Didn’t

Posted by Matt on June 3, 2008

Troubled linebacker and former Bengal Odell Thurman has failed a NFL drug test for the third time in his career and is now facing an indefinite suspension from the league. Many were surprised when the Bengals released Thurman nearly two weeks ago after sticking with him during his two consecutive season-long suspensions, raising complaints that the move seemed rather untimely.

The Bengals now, however, give off the appearance of actually being smart, for once, having dumped the former Georgia Bulldog just prior to his latest issues with the league. Either a teammate or other member of the organization tipped management to his latest encounter with drugs or the coaching staff became suspicious after Thurman’s most recent trip home to attend his grandmother’s funeral.

Whatever the case may be, we have never been able to say with any ounce of regularity that the Bengals management has actually known something that the rest of western civilization didn’t. But this time they just might have.

I guess the sun even shines on a dog’s ass every once in a while.

Linkage: SI.com

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Urlacher For Ocho?

Posted by Matt on April 18, 2008

Editor’s Note: Discuss this article NOW over at ACC vs. SEC! – Urlacher For Ocho?

Sources are reporting that current Chicagoan Brian Urlacher has asked for a trade through his agent and is flirting with retirement if not dealt.

My first thought? Chad Johnson and a draft pick for Brian Urlacher. Apparently the #85 jersey is available on the Bears but it appears as if David Haugh of the Chicago Tribune doesn’t like the idea (link).

I do, and I’ll tell you why. It fills a need for both teams.

Da Bears need a marquee wide receiver after releasing Muhsin Muhammad and seeing Bernard Berrian headed to the Vikings, while the Bengals need to do something with Chad Johnson because this situation is only going to get worse before it gets better.

On the other side, the Bengals need defense and lots of it. Urlacher is the play-making linebacker that Bengals’ fans have been begging for and thought they might have had in Odell Thurman before the “can’t stay out of trouble” bug bit the team. Brian, like Ocho Cinco, is seeking a trade.

Of course there are all kinds of contract issues I am not smart enough to figure out and relay to you fine people but I do know that Johnson’s contract MUST be restructured before any deal could be put in to place due the Salary Cap hit the Bengals would take. However, as Condo said, “if Chad ‘really’ wants to be traded, he’ll restructure.”

Plus, if they’re both making demands why not trade one problem for another?

Could this act be heading to “The Windy City”? I doubt Chicago fans want Chad but we’ll wait for Swerski to return from his most recent binge to weigh in from Bears Camp on the issue.

Linkage: Chicago Sun-Times

Posted in Cincinnati Bengals, NFL | Tagged: , | 6 Comments »

New Offseason, Same Old Bengals

Posted by Matt on April 3, 2008

UPDATE: At 11:30AM this morning Bengals.com reported that the fledgling franchise has cut my man Chris Henry. Al Davis has reportedly called Chris to offer his condolences and to let Henry know that “Oakland is really nice in the summer time.”

Link: Bengals.com

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After recently being cited for driving on expired tags, embattled Cincinnati criminal wide receiver Chris Henry is now charged with assault after allegedly punching a gentleman at a party. Honestly, I am not even sure what numbered incident this is with the police for Chris…42nd?…43rd? I’ve lost count, and quite frankly it is not even fun anymore. The Bengals are a joke…

At least the Reds are .500.

Link: Local 12

UPDATE:

New mugshot goodness…

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If you thought the Bengals couldn’t be any more of a joke at this point, check out the bizarre interview of Chad Johnson on a recent edition of SportsCenter:

ESPN.com

Posted in Cincinnati Bengals, NFL | Tagged: | 5 Comments »

Bengals’ Defense Would Rather Play Rugby

Posted by Matt on February 1, 2008

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Should I be concerned that my teams’ defense is so bad that its players would rather go to Europe and play rugby? I knew the Bengals defense was bad, but I didn’t realize it was that bad.

For reasons unknown to me, Bengals’ defensive lineman/linebacker Dhani Jones will undergo three rugby training sessions at Blackheath’s Rectory Field to learn the sport before joining the Blackheath squad for “five to 10 minutes off of the bench” this Saturday against the Cornish All Blacks (it’s a shame rugby is still segregated…).

Listen, I know about as much about rugby as I know about ballroom dancing but I can guarantee you it doesn’t pay as well as the NFL and it is substantially more dangerous, so why risk it? With all of the injuries and lack of depth on the defensive side of the ball, I have no earthly idea as to why the Bengals’ management would even allow this but it is a perfect example of how ass backwards the Bengals franchise is.

Do you think Coach Belichick would ever let Tedy Bruschi play cricket in Ireland? That’s like asking if can I get more women than Tom Brady.

Linkage: Scrum.com

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Viewer Feedback – Bengals’ Style

Posted by Matt on January 21, 2008

Indianamatt, who runs the fine site Licensed to Blog (link), left the following question in the thread for Striving For Mediocrity, a recent post on the Cincinnati Bengals:

“What’s your take on Zimmer?”

It may not seem like much but it was actually a great question as not much has been said about the Bengals’ new defensive coordinator on this site or, especially, in the media in general. I decided to do a small write up instead of merely answering the question in the thread and if anybody ever has any similar questions posted in on any of the articles we have here, we will attempt to do the same. We love discussion and that’s why we do this site as it is a way for people to share views if they want to.

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That being said, I have a solid outlook for Zimmer. It is like I told my roommate, something obviously needed to be done to appease the fans, especially after Carson’s comments, but I don’t know how much of an immediate difference it is going to make as is the case with any regime change. I think the Bengals will steadily improve on that side of the ball but they aren’t going to turn in to the Steel Curtain.

Zimmer has some solid experience and a decent resume on defense. He did well in Dallas running the 4-3 but it seems like he’ had his most success on defense in the college ranks — not to take anything away from what he did with the Cowboys, mind you. As far as last year goes, you can’t really point to anything he did in Atlanta the one year he was there because that franchise is in absolute shambles with the distractions of Vick, Petrino/D-Hall, and the odd release of defensive lineman Grady Jackson — who went on to finish the season strong in Jacksonville and was an important part of the win over the Steelers in the Wild Card game.

Zimmer is a 4-3 guy through and through and I think that solidifies the fact that we have to pick up some linebackers this offseason. Nobody knows if Odell Thurman will ever play football again and we were so depleted at the linebakers position by the end of the year that Marvin was moving Robert Geathers off of the defensive line.

Do I think Zimmer is better than Bresnahan? Yes and with the atmosphere surrounding the Bengals, even if he was merely Chuck’s equal something had to be done to spark change. Do I think he was the BEST available? Maybe not but that is tough to determine as teams don’t have to allow their coordinators to interview with other teams unless it is for the head coach’s position — that’s an NFL rule. What I do know is that Zimmer has the potential to improve the defense immensely (‘potential’ ALWAYS being the key word with the Bengals) but Marvin and, more importantly, Mike Brown has to put the personnel on the field for Mike to work with.

And when it comes scouting for player personnel with the Bengals, well, we all know how I feel about that…

Linkage: Striving For Mediocrity

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Striving For Mediocrity

Posted by Matt on January 13, 2008

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It is no secret to ‘The Queen City’ — and has been the topic of many debates — that the Cincinnati Bungles are home to the NFL’s smallest personnel unit with six scouts and execs; keep in mind that the Indianapolis Colts and the New England Patriots have 14 personnel staff members while the Shitsburgh Steelers have 10.

But no, don’t let that be a point of concern.

“‘I think we’re efficient and I don’t apologize for that. I think that’s what we should try to be,’ Brown said last week in a rare media session with Bengals.com and The Cincinnati Enquirer. ‘Since everyone has more scouts than we do and there are just as many (teams) below us as there are above us, is that the answer?'”

‘Atta boy, Mikey!  Way to compete for average. 

The Bengals.com expose on Mike Brown by my early pick for the 2008 Pulitzer Prize, Geoff Hobson, went on:

“Brown points to the club’s .525 winning percentage since Lewis became head coach in 2003, which is behind 14 teams and ahead of 17 others.”

“‘Isn’t that what matters?’ Brown asked. ‘This is the product. Not the number of employees, but what the group as a whole produces. I would argue that we do well.'”

Basically Brown points to being average and then uses that as justification for how he’s ran the team…unbelievable…all on top of patting himself on the back for landing Carson Palmer.  Yeah, the Heisman Trophy winning stud who was everyone’s top draft pick was a real stretch — he really did his homework…

Need I remind him of some of his lesser-respected draft picks?: A Walk Down Memory Lane 

And if you’re wondering why the Bengals can lead the league in arrests each year but not any positive, on-the-field statistical categories:

“Rang (NFLDraftScout.com senior analyst) says the problem others point to about a small staff is the character issue. And the Bengals have been bit by that, particularly in the ’05 draft where off-field problems for just Odell Thurman and Chris Henry alone have cost them 42 games in NFL suspensions.   ‘When I’ve talked to other teams, they tell me how much interviewing now has to be done at the school visits for character,” Rang said. “Not just coaches, but trainers, equipment guys, tutors. If you’ve got a small staff, that may be too much for one guy, and maybe some of that stuff isn’t discovered.'”

Couldn’t have said it any better myself.  It is inexplicable to me as to why the Bengals continue to operate in this fashion with the lack of winning seasons, the off-of-the-field issues, etcetera.  It is obvious that Mike Brown is no Paul Brown but with the money he has you would think that he would, at some point, want to field a real winner.  A team everybody can be proud of.  But the aforementioned comments tell the tale.

So wonder no more as to why the Bengals can never turn the corner — they’re just striving for mediocrity.

Linkage: Bengals.com

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Finally.

Posted by Matt on January 2, 2008

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The Cincinnati Bengals have finally pulled the trigger on defensive coordinator Chuck Bresnahan after finishing 28th, 30th, and 27th in total defense in the NFL in the past three seasons since signing on with the team early 2005. The team finished 22nd points/28th yards in 2005, 17th points/30th yards in 2006 and 24th points/25th yards this season to close out what has been a less than mediocre stint in Cincinnati.

After quarterback Carson Palmer recently told the press he didn’t feel this batch of coaches could take the team to the proverbial next level, I could have cared less how positively Marvin Lewis tried to spin the statement and his coaches’ performances this year, change was inevitable. You simply can’t have THE captain of your team and franchise quarterback, who happens to be a very respected and not-so-out spoken player, question your coaching staff without change ensuing.

And here we are. Chuck Bresnahan has been fired — along with linebackers coach Ricky Hunley — and I would like to think that the “FIRE CHUCK” campaign found on the top navigation bar had something to do with it. OK, probably not but one can wish, right?

Linkage: Bengals.com

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No Fun League

Posted by Matt on November 26, 2007

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I usually don’t sound off on the announcers (unless you are Mike Patrick talking about Britney Spears), and I especially don’t criticize the Bengals’ own Boomer Esiason much either, but Esiason teamed up with my most hated Shitsburgh product in Bill Cowher to tee off on Chad Johnson regarding his First Half touchdown celebration — which consisted of getting behind a CBS camera for five seconds and taking a shot of the Bengals’ sideline. In fact, not only could they not let it go long enough during Halftime to analyze the actual game or talk about the other scores, they got back on their respective soap boxes in the post-game discussion in a contest the Bengals won 35-6.

To summarize, their arguments against this celebration were as follows:

  1. The ensuing penalty hurts the team and sends mixed messages to all involved.
  2. It undermines Coach Lewis to his team and embarrasses him in front of the fans.
  3. The Bengals are not good enough to have anything to celebrate about and Chad hadn’t scored since the second game

1. The penalty MAY HAVE cost the Bengals enough field position for a Rob Bironas field goal in a game the Bengals won by 29 points, but we’ll actually never know if the defense would have stopped them without the extra 10 or 15 yards on the kickoff. Additionally, I don’t care if it was a close game at the time and I don’t care to hear arguments such as: “what if it decided the game” — because it didn’t. And quite frankly, it was arguably NOT a penalty as it did not actually use any item on the field of play as a prop and it occurred outside the broad white line that separates players from picture takers. Any other celebrations that are allowed that also occur outside that broad white line come to mind?:

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2. As far as Coach Lewis is concerned the man has never publicly and directly denounced Chad’s celebrations and whenever Marvin has tightened the reigns on #85, he has obliged. Also, any one paying any attention to the actual game would have noticed that Coach Lewis himself even had a smirk on his face when he greeted Chad as he returned to the sidelines. There has not been one teammate to publicly speak out against C.J. and his celebrations and never once has any team member undermined Coach Lewis’s authority to the media. Yet, for some reason, guys like Cowher and Esiason want to blow the entire celebration situation out of proportion instead of discussing the actual game, as if these sparse celebrations by Chad are the reasons for the Bengals’ troubles this year. They fail to call the franchise out on poor play calling, a bad defense, and character issues that make San Quentin look like a monastery and not a prison as the reasons for their demise this season.

3. “The Bengals aren’t good enough…” – They’re right, the Bengals aren’t good enough…at least not to make the playoffs. However, this team has had little to celebrate about in the past year thanks to arrests, injuries, and terrible play and sometimes it is just nice TO have something to celebrate about. It is a proven fact that when Chad has his swagger and gets his enthusiasm going early and feels apart of the total package he performs well — as evident by his career-high 12 receptions and his career-high tying 3 touchdowns in today’s game. So whatever gets Chad’s “sexy back,” and the teams’ confidence and swagger back for that matter, is well worth it because after Rudi and Chad each scored touchdowns for the first time in a long time, the Bengals took off like a jet airplane. If the penalty means getting his team back and it is something the fans enjoy — thus getting the crowd back in to the game (if you believe the fans DON’T enjoy it in Cincinnati, please tell me why 1 in every 3 jerseys is a Chad Johnson jersey) — then I don’t think Coach Lewis will mind the 15 yard hit. And if you don’t think Coaches use these tactics in games to win their teams back I could show you a video of 75% of technical fouls called against basketball coaches or I could just present to you Exhibit A:

Yeah…Georgia won that game against a higher-ranked opponent and hasn’t lost since.

Listen, this is the NFL and it is a billion-dollar enterprise. It is a business and that business is to entertain me. If Coach Cowher and Boomer Esiason want “just the game” without frills or celebrations then they should make a career move to the college and high school ranks. College and high school football is a game where, I can agree that, most celebrations are a bit too much as not all of the teams have the same fiscal opportunites among each other as all teams in the NFL do and the players aren’t there for large salaries and a job entertaining the masses, they are there to get help paying for and education, better career opportunities, and to become better, more well-rounded men. But do you know why the two of them won’t make that move down? Because there are far fewer well paying jobs in college football, and especially in high school football, being talking heads than there is in the NFL. The total package of professional football just makes more money because guys like myself, who have paid $70 for a Bengals jersey that cost about $1.79 to make, are entertained and become the reason Cowher and Esiason earned the big bucks while coaching and playing, respectively, and now have jobs where people care about what they talk about. On top of earning our dollars by entertaining us, the thought of what Chad Johnson might do in his celebration if he does score is just about the only reason to watch a Bengals game these days.

I watch University of Kentucky football games because I am a student at the school and feel a part of it all. I watch the games to celebrate with the wins and be deflated with the losses. It isn’t about entertainment for me because there is nothing entertaining about being a nervous wreck for four hours every Saturday and having your heart broken 50% of the time. Now that’s not to say you can’t take pride in your team in the NFL; however, I watch the NFL to be entertained and watch the top athletes in the world compete in the world’s most popular sport this side of futbol…whatever that is.

Penalizing every Tom, Dick, and Harry for smiling after they score takes away from the pure competition that is supposed to be occurring on the field and causes two pundits, such as Cowher and Esiason, to discuss at length an event that did not happen on the field of play instead of talking about the 150 that did.

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“T.N.B. Bengals” – Weeks 11/12

Posted by Matt on November 25, 2007

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The T.N.B. Bengals are bringing their sexy back, as Chad Johnson would say, and here is the rundown thus far this season to catch everyone up.

The T.N.B. Bengals had bye weeks in Weeks 1, 5, and 10 of the regular season so through Week 10, they’re 3-4 with 3 Byes.  It should be noted that the real Bengals were 3-6 with 1 Bye through Week 10 of the NFL Regular Season and since the whole point was to predict the season, we’re right on schedule with the same amount of wins through 10 weeks (although the games that were winners don’t actually coincide).

Cardinals @ Bengals (Week 11) – Last Week

This game was a sloppy, turnover-laden contest that saw the Bengals take a 21-7 lead in to Halftime.  Esiason would hit McGee early for the quick score and then three consecutive turnovers by the Cardinals, Bengals, and Cardinals, respectively, would put the ball back in Esiason’s hands and would lead to their second score of the day – a 20 yard scamper by Ickey Woods.  The Cardinals would score late in the half on a 20 yard run of their own to make the score respectable going in to the break.

The Second Half would be more of the same as Esiason hit McGee deep again setting up yet another Ickey touchdown on a drive that was sparked by a missed field goal by the Cardinals that turned the ball over yet again.  Esiason would finish with a monster game with 220 yards passing and Ickey Woods would lead the rushing charge with two scores. 

Cardinals – 14

Bengals –  28

Season Record: 4-4 with 3 Byes

Oilers (Titans) @ Bengals (Week 12) – This Week

The Bengals would jump out in front early with a short touchdown run by Ickey Woods that was set up by a deep pass play from Esiason to Eddie Brown on the “Flea Flicker.”  The Bengals would pitch a shut out in the First Quarter but Warren Moon would not be denied (obviously) thereafter as he would connect on an 80 yard touchdown pass to Lorenzo White early in the Second Quarter, a play that would set the tone for the rest of the game.  After trading lengthy field goals, the two teams would take a 10-10 tie in to the lockeroom at Halftime.

Moon and his high-powered offense would get the ball first in the Second Half and would make quick work of a long field, with Warren heaving another 70+ yard touchdown bomb, this time to Haywood Jefferies.  On the ensuing two drives, the Bengals would impload giving up a touchdown on a Boomer Esiason fumble and a safety on a Boomer Esiason sack, the second of which would set up another long field goal for the Oilers (Titans). 

Warren Moon would answer an Ickey Woods touchdown run late in the game with a touchdown run of his own and the Bengals would simply run out of time after that.

Oilers (Titans) – 43

Bengals – 24

Season Record: 4-5 with 3 Byes

If you’re unfamiliar with the segment “T.N.B. Bengals,” click here: “T.N.B. Bengals.”

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Whoa, Don’t Go Patting Yourself On The Back Just Yet

Posted by Matt on November 13, 2007

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As many faithful followers of this site have realized by now, the bane of the existence of both myself and Charlie Hustle this NFL season has been the antics of the Cincinnati Bengals’ resident “beat writer” Geoff Hobson.  I have gotten to the point where I try not to read what he writes as A) the headlines usually tell the tale anyways and B) if you listen to Geoff you’d think the entire Bengals season is full of wild flowers and sunshine.

And again, after Cincinnati’s 21-7 victory over the Baltimore Ravens on Sunday, Hobson fails to disappoint as the headline for his post-game blog entry was as follows:  “Take A Bow, Defense”.

Laughable.  A professional defense puts together one solid performance among eight other abysmal performances and Hobson crowns them showstoppers.

Need I remind the viewing public that this “take a bow”-quality performance came against an anemic offense that ranks just 28th in points scored and 26th in total yards gained (out of 32 teams).  Also, need I remind anyone that, even after this picture-perfect day, the Bengals defense still ranks 30th in points yielded and 31st in yards allowed! 

The defense is embarrassing, they just happened upon an offense that was equally as terrible and did what any opposite, yet equal, force would do to another: cancel it out.

So go ahead defense, take that “well-deserved” bow but remember that there is a hell of a lot more that you need to prove to Bengals’ fans not wearing the jungle-colored glasses of Hobson before I’ll reserve an aisle seat back on the bandwagon with my buddy Geoff.

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