Originally posted on WhoDeyFans  |  Last updated 6/29/12

This is a simple but an important question. Marvin Lewis is going into his 10th season as head coach of the Bengals. Only two other coaches — Bill Belichick and Andy Reid — held their current job when he became the HC in 2003. In fact, only 7 current head coaches have more experience than Marvin has. In an era of disposable staff, he has found unusual longevity.

Given that Marvin’s overall regular season record as HC currently stands at 69-74 (.483), that longevity is particularly unusual. The NFL is a win-now entity, and guys who hover around .500 generally do not get such a long period to establish a winning record. But when he agreed to work for Mike Brown, Marvin had to know that he was signing with a man who places atypical value on continuity.

Also working against his favor is his 0-3 postseason record. Getting to the playoffs was great in 2005 after suffering through the Lost Decade, but three quick exits have left simply making it to the dance feeling empty. Fans have tasted success and raised their expectations. To this point, Marvin has not delivered on them.

We cannot properly judge Marvin’s time as coach without taking into consideration the condition of the team before he arrived. His 69 wins in 9 seasons tower above the mere 52 wins in 11 seasons amassed by the trio of HCs before him. (That is 11 fewer wins than the anemic Browns have collected over the past 11 seasons.) He may not yet have taken the team as far as fans want to go, but he has certainly managed to outshine Shula, Coslet and LeBeau by comparison.

Another factor in assessing your opinion of Marvin is sure to be the man who employs him, Mike Brown, whom Marvin must please while trying to build a winning team. In many ways, Brown is like the moving sidewalk at the airport, constantly dragging the team toward the putrid through his infatuation with “redeeming” troubled players and refusal to keep pace with other teams in staffing and facilities.

Though we may never know for sure, many fans believe that Marvin’s greatest success with the team has not been on the field but in getting the black-thumbed owner to relinquish much of the operation of the team. There is no denying that the vibe of the organization is not what it used to be. The recent outstanding draft classes, the avoidance of players with character issues and removal of locker room distractions, and an overdue overhaul of the coaching staff are taking the team in a new direction, one that he had begun to find a few years into his tenure but was derailed by clowns and dopes.

Those who would prefer to move on from Marvin are at odds with the great Bengal and uber-commentator Cris Collinsworth, who told Dan Hoard that he is one who believes in Marvin. He is one who thinks that Marvin has finally brought the Bengals to the threshold of being a significant factor in the NFL. Will this be the season that he finally makes his mark on the league?

I hope he does, not simply for a winning season and some swagger rights, but for the leverage it will give him with the team as he negotiates another contract after the season. Whatever medicine he has been feeding the organization, one more heaping helping could be the final dose he needs to build a lasting winner.

Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

Peyton Manning to miss at least two more weeks

Notre Dame DT: Committee 'spit in our faces' with ranking

LaRon Landry suspended indefinitely by NFL

Don’t blame Mike Pettine for benching Johnny Manziel. Blame Johnny.

Danny Ainge: Celtics’ Marcus Smart has shown ‘propensity to get injured’

Ravens claim Jimmy Clausen off waivers, send Joe Flacco to IR


Report: Signs point to Chip Kelly, Eagles parting ways after season

Johnny Bench(ed): Manziel demoted to third string

ACC schools find themselves in major financial trouble


New York Rangers are the richest team in the NHL

Magic laments potential record setting in Warriors vs. Lakers

Report: Maple Leafs are no longer the NHL’s most valuable franchise

Ranking the 10 best games of 2015 college football rivalry week

Did a Chipotle employee convince Danny Ainge to trade for Isaiah Thomas?

Bud Black joins Angels organization as special assistant to GM

Ben Simmons, Henry Ellenson excelled in freshman vs. freshman battle

Maximizing the Bucks

Holly Holm asked Beyonce who she was

Florida, Florida State kick off college football rivalry week

Which goalies are pulling ahead for the Vezina Trophy?

2015-16 UEFA Champions League roundup: Matchday 5, Pt. 1

Who has the edge: comparing current College Football Playoff outsiders

Rex Ryan on interference penalty: Would Bill Belichick have been flagged?

Examining the Mavericks' hot start

NFL News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.
Get it now!
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

Ranking the 10 best games of 2015 college football rivalry week

Examining the Mavericks' hot start

Johnny Bench(ed): Manziel demoted to third string

Mike Trout, four years in

Tom Brady on ‘Rex Ryan!’ line call: It’s ‘in the playbook’

Five NFL teams trending downward

Not so fast, USC: Eagles Chip Kelly buys Philly-area home

The five best hockey fights from Week 7

Bart Starr doesn’t remember Green Bay Packers career

WATCH: Did Mike Ditka really fart again?

Today's Best Stuff
For Publishers
Company Info
Follow Yardbarker