Requiem For A Bengals Fan
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Requiem For A Bengals Fan

Being a Cincinnati Bengals fan has been disappointing recently, but there is still hope for the future.

Requiem For A Bengals Fan

“Playoffs? Don’t talk about playoffs! Are you kidding me? Playoffs?” Ah, the famous words of an irate Jim Mora at a press conference in 2001. Those words resonate with me every time the NFL’s Cincinnati Bengals lose a playoff game. Although Mora never coached for the Bengals, there is a striking similarity between him and Cincinnati’s current head coach, Marvin Lewis. On Jan. 9, after losing in the first round of the NFL playoffs for the fifth year in a row, Lewis joined Mora as the only two NFL head coaches to lose their first six postseason appearances.

All six of Lewis’s playoff losses were during my lifetime. I was born in 1996. The Cincinnati Bengals have not won a playoff game since 1991. Who would be a fan of such a bad team? Well, when you are six years old and choose your favorite team based on your favorite animal rather than the success of the organization, disappointment is almost inevitable. Disappointment is inevitable for every sports fan, but some of us feel it worse than others.

Being a Bengals fan in the 2000s and 2010s is probably not as heartbreaking as being a Buffalo Bills fan in the 1990s or as frustrating as being a Minnesota Vikings fan for pretty much the entire Super Bowl era. The Bills reached the Super Bowl four years in a row, but could not close the deal. The Vikings have lost the Super Bowl four times as well, but their 1998 squad, arguably one of the greatest NFL teams of all time, failed to make the big game.

My frustration and disappointment in the Bengals is like a mixture of the early 1990s Bills and the 1998 Vikings. The Bengals have not been to a Super Bowl since 1989. In recent years, however, there have been Super Bowl caliber teams that just could not get it done in the postseason. Apparently, the playoff gods cursed Cincinnati.

The 2000s were tough on Bengals fans and players. It seemed like every other day a different player went to jail. Plus, the team stunk. Those were dark times in the kingdom.

The 2010s brought a new quarterback and a new mindset, but most importantly hope. “This is our year!” Every year was supposed to be our year, but every year since the Bengals drafted Andy Dalton has been the same: a loss in the first round. The Bengals losing in the first round happens so much, they have become the butt of jokes. Somehow, Cincinnati always finds a way to lose, and it is one of the most frustrating things I have ever dealt with.

Many franchises in sports have a history of letting their fans down. There may be flashes of success, but some teams are plagued with losing streaks and playoff droughts. But I am tired of being disappointed. I need the Bengals to win a playoff game. All I want is one playoff win and I will be happy. Then I can finally get the images of Jim Mora out of my head.

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This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.
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