Marvin Lewis is obviously a good coach. His track record speaks for itself, both before he came to Cincinnati and what he did when he got here.
What's wrong with the Bengals is not "first and foremost" Marvin Lewis, by NO MEANS.
Is he a perfect coach? No. Who is? He makes mistakes. So do I. So do you. I coach high school lacrosse, been a head coach for several years. I make mistakes all the time. I learn from them. I am a much better coach today than I was four years ago. But I still make mistakes all the time. I am very glad I don't have the media scrutiny Lewis does, heh heh.
The problem with the Bengals, "first and foremost," remains Mike Brown.
As good a playa as Lewis may be, he can only play the cards he's dealt. And Mike Brown is still the dealer.
Brown is a very likeable fellow. I've met him, very pleasant to talk to. Good public speaker. Dry humor, actually a fairly funny guy in person. EXCELLENT businessman. From a purely business standpoint, the Bengals are a model franchise. He meant everything he said in that interview the other day.
But as a football general manager, he's just awful. Like Lewis, Brown's record speaks for itself. His father was a great football man, who's in the Hall of Fame for very good reason. One of the great ones ever.
The apple, it would seem, sometimes DOES fall far from the tree.
It is possible his daughter Katie, who will take over when he dies/retires, will do a better job of it. (Hell, be tough to do any worse, wouldn't it?)
Perhaps she will simply hire a competent general manager and let him handle the football side of things.
That would be good.
But the bottom line here is, as long as Mike Brown is running that team, he will not (apparently) hire a GM.
And very little will change football-wise.
You might get the occasional anamoly like 2005, if you have a good coach.
But overall, it's gonna continue to suck.