Ex-Bengal Dave Rimington: Cincinnati Like the Black Hole of Professional Football

The Bengals were recently ranked the worst franchise in professional sports by ESPN The Magazine, an extremely well-earned honor. That Cincinnati can’t see what they’ve done to deserve the title is further proof of how clueless they are. There was only so long Carson Palmer could take playing for them before he wanted out, and it’s a wonder he lasted as long as he did.

But he’s not the only one who feels that way.

Former two-time Outland Trophy winning center Dave Rimington is the latest player to rip on the organization, saying it’s like a black hole. Check out what the former Nebraska star offensive lineman told Big Ten Blog, as shared by Pro Football Talk:

“I went from one of the best organizations in college football to probably one of the worst organizations in the NFL,” Rimington said. “I went from a weight room that was half the size of a football field to a weight room that looked like a junior high weight room, and the strength coach didn’t want anybody to lift. … It was ridiculous the stuff we had to go through there. I just had to shake my head. It’s like the black hole of professional football.

“Good players go there and you never hear from them again.”

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Nick Lachey: Cincinnati Bengals Are a Joke

Singer and performer Nick Lachey is a hardcore Cincinnati sports fan and actually almost bought the Reds several years ago. I used to call him a man-bander and think he was just a storefront fan posing as a hardcore guy, but I have to admit I was wrong. After reading his interview with SI’s Jimmy Traina earlier in the week, I have to say Lachey comes across as a true Cincinnati sports fan who knows his stuff.

The best part of the interview was when Traina asked what it’s like being a Bengals fan. As someone who has divorced from the team, I can relate and I agree 100% with Lachey’s answer. Here’s what he said:

“At one point, I tried to defend the team. But if you care about your city, your fanbase and ultimately your team, you can’t defend that ownership any longer. It’s a joke. I’ve been pretty vocal about saying there needs to be a change there. Quite frankly, I think Mike Brown would love nothing more than if this labor situation ended the season because then he wouldn’t have to pay any players, he can run scabs out there and make guaranteed money. For him, no season is a best-case scenario.”

It’s so true. You want to defend your team, but their ownership is a joke. They’re too cheap to get a new coach, too cheap to get a proper scouting department, and too cheap to get their first-round picks in camp on time. It is a joke there. I also agreed with Lachey about Ochocinco whose act in Cincinnati is played out. But the area I disagree with him on is Carson Palmer.

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Why Exactly Are the Bengals Keeping Marvin Lewis and Carson Palmer?

In the final regular season edition of our LBS NFL Power Rankings, I stated that I would be speechless if Marvin Lewis’ contract with the Cincinnati Bengals was extended at the end of the season.  I lied.  That doesn’t, however, mean that I understand it.  When Bengals owner Mike Brown sat next to Lewis on Tuesday and announced that he’s sticking with him for at least another two years, the NFL world all tilted their heads like they’d just heard the human equivalent of a dog whistle.

Terrell Owens hit the nail right on the head when he said the Bengals were terrible earlier this season, but apparently the belief within the organization is that its head coach is not to blame.  Lewis has been the head coach in Cincinnati for eight years and has compiled a 60-67-1 record.  He’s taken his team to the playoffs twice and won as many NFL playoff games as I have.  Apparently that’s enough to keep your job.

After finishing the 2010 season with a record of 4-12, it’s obvious the Bengals need some significant changes.  They’re keeping their head coach on board and it looks like their quarterback is staying put as well.  The headache commonly referred to as Batman and Robin will likely be gone, but is that enough for Lewis to take control of a below-average team and build a winner?

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Terrell Owens on Bengals: ‘We Are Terrible’

Terrell Owens loves to point the finger. In fact, it may be his all-time favorite pastime. Whether it’s making fun of Donovan McNabb’s new contract or criticizing Jason Garrett’s coaching methods in Dallas, T.O. always has to let his opinion be heard on issues around the NFL.  And when his own team is the problem, Owens isn’t afraid to go there either.

As relayed by SB Nation, T.O. told the Cincinnati Enquirer that the Bengals are “terrible” after the team’s 49-31 loss at the hands of the Buffalo Bills.  More specifically, he said, “Let me look you in the eyes and emphasize — we are terrible.”  The wide receiver may have sounded more professional if he threw a “right now” in there as in, “We are terrible right now.”  At least that would imply the Bengals haven’t completely cashed it in on 2010 and encourage fans to still show up to the games.

Nonetheless, Owens is right.  Cincinnati is now 2-8 after a massive collapse on Sunday against one of the NFL’s worst teams.  Aside from the Cowboys, I’d say the Bengals are the big surprise of 2010.  Their roster is filled with Pro Bowl caliber players, yet they look like the Bengals Corey Dillon grew tired of before he forced his way out of town.

We can expect to see some pretty big changes for the Bengals after this year.  Marvin Lewis could finally be gone and it might even be a good idea for them to part ways with Carson Palmer.  Like we said before, Palmer just isn’t what he used to be and whatever they have going on right now is clearly not getting the job done.  Something’s got to give.

Carson Palmer Throws Costly Late Game Interception Against Dolphins

The more Cincinnati Bengals games I watch, the more I realize Carson Palmer just isn’t what he used to be.  A former Pro Bowler and top-5 quarterback in the NFL, Palmer has had a lot of trouble protecting the football over the past few seasons.  More specifically, he has never appeared to be the same Carson since he tore his ACL during the playoffs back in 2006.

Palmer’s seventh interception of the 2010 season was a costly one.  The Bengals found themselves trailing the Dolphins 22-14 late in the game Sunday afternoon, but still had a chance to send the game to overtime.  They even got some help from Miami when a roughing the passer call put Cincinnati into Dolphins territory.  Just when it appeared the Bengals had a shot to drive the field and at least give themselves a chance to tie with a touchdown and a two-point conversion, Palmer threw the ball right into the hands of Miami defensive back Sean Smith.  It was the first pick of Smith’s career.

If you add in Terrell Owens’ lucky touchdown catch that should have been an interception, you get a tough day from the Bengals’ leader.  With Chad Ochocinco and T.O., Palmer has plenty of talent to throw to and just hasn’t been able to get it done.  The Bengals now find themselves in a hole with a 2-5 record, and for once we can say a lot of the blame rests on their quarterback’s shoulders.

Housh Wants Bengals, Bengals Don’t Want Housh: Sound Familiar?

Hmm.  A wide receiver that wants to join the Cincinnati Bengals even though the Bengals don’t seem to want him.  Doesn’t that sound like another story we heard this past off-season?  Oh, yeah.  It was that Terrell Owens guy, and Chad Ochoncinco eventually got what he wanted when the Bengals brought him on board.

T.J. Houshmandzadeh, who left the Bengals last off-season after playing G.M. and trying to call his own shots, seems to be interested in teaming up with Batman and Robin.  Would that make him Catwoman?  I can’t think of any other significant characters from the Batman series, so I guess that’s the role he’d be accepting.  In any event, it’s obvious Housh wants to go back to Cincinnati when the Seahawks inevitably trade or release the wide receiver.

I miss it,” Houshmandzadeh told Carlos “Big C” Holmes of the Dayton Daily News in December 2009.  “The grass ain’t always greener.  Let me tell you that.”

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T.O. and Ochocinco: A Match Made in…

Brace yourselves everyone. T.O. and Ochocinco are coming to a town near you. The 36-year-old Terrell Owens agreed to deal with the Cincinnati Bengals on Tuesday. Win or lose, it should at least be as good HBO’s Hard Knocks.”

The question now is, of course, will this be a match made in heaven or hell? Well, that just depends on who you are and what week of the season it is. Right now it’s honeymoon time and Twitter accounts are aflutter with excitement over having the two reality stars on the same roster. By week eight, however, I wouldn’t be surprised if Cincinnati starts showing up on the midseason bust list and is more entertaining for self-destructive incidents than football.

At 36, T.O. is not half the player he once was, tallying the least productive season of his career since starting in the league with San Francisco. Optimists and Ohio sports fans looking to bounce back from LeBron can get excited for this, but with two personalities that big out on the flanks, the odds of this working are slim to none. Even if T.O. does not end up displaying the same character issues he offered in in Philadelphia and Dallas, career lows across the board are not going to make this a worthwhile signing for the Bengals.

I can only wish my most sincere good luck to QB Carson Palmer. The passing game was so poor for the Bengals that the guy actually campaigned for T.O. to sign with Cincinnati.