Taylor shocked the world last year after leading his young Bengals team to the AFC Championship, and then coming up one play short in the Super Bowl against the Rams. The 39-year-old from Norman, Oklahoma had people skeptical when he was hired as the Bengals coach after just a couple years of previous NFL coaching experience. While his first two seasons were rough, everything fell into place last season when a healthy Joe Burrow and the outstanding rookie Ja’Marr Chase rekindled their LSU connection.
The challenge for Taylor is going to be getting back to the Super Bowl, especially in a stacked AFC. Coming from the Sean McVay tree of coaching, Taylor has a strong offensive mind and it showed. The Bengals had one of the most explosive offenses in the NFL last year, averaging 27.1 points per game and 361 total yards per game. Taylor has relied on his defensive play-caller to take care of the defense, similar to how McVay operates in Los Angeles.
Last season was Taylor’s coming out season. He out coached John Harbaugh and Mike Tomlin within his own division, and out-strategized Andy Reid in the AFC Championship game. Can he do the same this year? My pre-season bet was for the Bengals to make the playoffs but not the Super Bowl this year. It’s up to Taylor to prove me wrong.
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