The Cincinnati Bengals are out of the playoffs with their Wild Card game loss to the Houston Texans on Saturday, and there is a chance they may be out an offensive coordinator as well. Bengals offensive coordinator Jay Gruden is interviewing for the head coaching job with the Arizona Cardinals and Philadelphia Eagles.
With the Arizona Cardinals firing of head coach Ken Whisenhunt and the Philadelphia Eagles removal on long time leader Andy Reid, these jobs are up for grabs and both teams are interested in Cincinnati Bengals’ Jay Gruden. Gruden has been the Bengals’ offensive coordinator for the past two years and both years the team has made the playoffs only to go on and lose in their first round Wild Card game.
Given the Cincinnati Bengals lack of success in recent history – this was the first time they had made the playoffs in back to back seasons in 30 years – it seems that Gruden is an obvious choice to move up to a head coach position. But is this really the case?
The truth is that the Cincinnati Bengals have had success often in spite of, rather than because of, their offense. The real hero on the gridiron in Cincinnati has been their defense, led by defensive coordinator Mike Zimmer. Surprisingly, and thankfully to Benglas’ fans, Zimmer is serially overlooked when it comes to head coaching opportunities.
Over the past few weeks of the 2012 season, this weekend’s game included, the Cincinnati Bengals offense has been downright dismal. From the nonexistent offensive line, to the dropped passes by immensely talented players like wide receiver A. J. Green and tight end Jermaine Gresham, and the overthrown and underthrown balls by quarterback Andy Dalton, there is plenty of blame to pass around.
The fact that the Cincinnati Bengals’ shortfalls have all come from the offense recently, and their triumphs come from the defense, makes it puzzling that Jay Gruden is up for a promotion. Perhaps it is his well-known last name due to the success of his brother, Jon Gruden, that catches attention. Regardless, Bengals fans will likely not shed any tears if Jay Gruden’s days in Cincinnati are indeed numbered.