Bengals, sticking with familiar faces, keep offensive coordinator Bill Lazor
Cincinnati's offense left much to be desired but the status quo remains for 2018
On the heels of Tuesday's surprising development that the Bengals decided to re-up coach Marvin Lewis for at least two more years, the organization doubled down on Wednesday, announcing that offensive coordinator Bill Lazor would return too.
The good news is that Lazor was an upgrade over Ken Zampese, who was fired after two of the most uninspiring offensive performances you'll ever see -- the season-opening 20-0 blanking by the Ravens followed by a 13-9 loss to the Texans.
But Lazor didn't exactly revolutionize the offense. The Bengals finished 2017 ranked 22nd in offense (20th in rushing, 21st in passing), according to Football Outsiders, behind the Ravens and just head of the Giants and Jets.
"[Lazor]'s very comfortable with how I see it," Lewis told reporters on Tuesday. "We basically wasted the 2,000 snaps of OTAs and training camp because it was through another man's eyes. When Bill took over, Bill was able to try and work through things that had been already done without trying to slow our players down. He tried to work in the constraints of the way things were and the things that had been installed."
That's a fair point -- last offseason Zampese was running things. But it's also fair to wonder why the Bengals waited until two games into the regular season to dump Zampese. Surely they knew his shortcomings before those two lackluster offensive performances got him canned in mid-September.
Either way, there will be a lot of familiar faces in Cincinnati next season, though the Bengals will likely be in the market for a new defensive coordinator. Paul Guenther's contract is up and the expectation is that he may join Jon Gruden in Oakland. Assuming, of course, Gruden is the next Raiders coach.
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