Hue Jackson? Hard Pass.

posted by Mo Egger, ESPN1530 - 

This was originally published in The Athletic.

I know I’m painting with an Andrew Billings-sized brush here, but man, Bengals fans have a weird thing for Hue Jackson, don’t they?

I mean, yes, by all accounts Hue did fine work here, including two seasons as a successful offensive coordinator before leaving to captain a rudderless ship coach the Browns in 2016.

But let’s be real, if we told the story of recent Bengals history, Jackson’s contributions to the club would warrant a footnote more than entire chapter. He was a valuable assistant, but when he bolted for Cleveland, I didn’t quite feel like this was the 20th Century version of Paul Brown passing on Bill Walsh, either. I didn’t totally get the infatuation with Jackson then, and after two and a half years of watching him become northeast Ohio’s version of Tiger Johnson, I’m a little puzzled by the infatuation Bengals and fans – and maybe, the people running the Bengals themselves – have with Hue now.

It’s an infatuation that kicked into hyper-drive yesterday when the Browns fired Hue, a mercy killing that was equal parts overdue and unjust. Overdue because the writing seemed on the wall when John Dorsey became Cleveland’s GM after last season’s 0-16 debacle, and unjust because Hue never really had a fair chance to be completely judged by wins and losses. Maybe no other coach would’ve had a winless season up there, but no human being alive would’ve managed a winning season either. His dismissal, though, has many speculating that he’ll come crawling back again to work for the Bengals.

To read the entire piece, go to The Athletic.

Mo Egger

Mo Egger

Mo Egger delivers his unique take on sports on Cincinnati's ESPN 1530! Read more

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