Tag:Mike Brown
Posted on: February 17, 2012 2:54 pm
Edited on: February 17, 2012 3:38 pm
 

Bengals hire Hue Jackson as assistant

JacksonBy Josh Katzowitz

Whatever faults you  might find with Bengals owner Mike Brown -- and I haven’t been ashamed in pointing them out -- you never can begrudge the man his loyalty. And he made another example of that today as the Bengals have announced they’ve hired former Raiders coach (and former Bengals receivers coach) Hue Jackson as an assistant helping the secondary and special teams*.

Jackson, you might recall, was fired only one season into his Oakland tenure after leading the team to an 8-8 record and trading first- and second-round picks to the Bengals for quarterback Carson Palmer.

*It should be noted that Jackson doesn't appear to have ever coached defense, though he did work with special teams when he was at Cal State-Fullerton in 1990 and the World League's London Monarchs in 1991. So yeah, this totally seems like a loyalty hire.

After Al Davis’ death and the hiring of general manager Reggie McKenzie, Jackson’s stay with the Raiders was doomed. Particularly after he tore into his team following a Week 17 loss, saying he was pissed off and disappointed. “I’m going to take a stronger hand in this whole team, in this whole organization,” Jackson said at the time. “There ain’t no way that I’m going to feel like I feel today a year from now. I promise you that."

Well, that’s totally true now, because Jackson should be in Cincinnati in Week 17 of 2012.

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It’s a place where he spent 2004-06, helping mold Chad Ochocinco and T.J. Houshmandzadeh into two of the better receivers in the league. And while he had the Raiders in the race for an AFC West title this year -- until, that is, a guy named Tim Tebow emerged for the Broncos -- McKenzie decided to bring in his own coach after the season.

“A the end of the day, I didn’t win enough games, didn’t get to the playoffs,” Jackson said in January. “Once Mark (Davis, Al’s son) saw where the franchise was, after he hired Reggie, he gave Reggie the opportunity to bring in his own coach.”

There has been speculation on who actually brokered the trade that seems like it’ll pay off awfully well for the Bengals -- Jackson now says he only helped bring the Raiders and Bengals together and that those on a higher pay-grade made the final decision.

But now, Jackson is in the strange position to see how the deal works out from the opposite side of where he was when he first helped make it.

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Posted on: January 27, 2012 6:03 pm
 

Greg Cook played one season but had major impact

Greg Cook died at the age of 65 (US Presswire).

Greg Cook badly injured his shoulder in 1969, and after that season, was never the same (US Presswire).By Josh Katzowitz

In 1969, Greg Cook was a specimen at quarterback during his rookie year for the Bengals. He led the AFL by completing 53.9 percent of his passes for 1,854 yards, 15 touchdowns and 11 interceptions (he played in only 11 of the team’s 14 games), and at the time, it was one of the best seasons ever by a rookie quarterback. He could throw the ball 70 yards, and he possessed great touch and timing.

In his rookie season, he also averaged 17.5 yards per pass – the 12th best season average in NFL/AFL history. Cook – who, at 65 years old, died Thursday – was destined to be a superstar, perhaps one of the best quarterbacks of all time.

But while that one season was the highlight of his entire playing career, Cook’s legacy indirectly impacted much of the NFL offense you watch today. Cook, you see, was the main reason Bill Walsh had to implement the West Coast offense in 1970.

“Greg was the single most talented player we’ve ever had with the Bengals,” Bengals president Mike Brown said in a statement. “His career was tragically short due to the injury. Had he been able to stay healthy, I believe he would have been the player of his era in the NFL.

“Greg was a personal friend to me. He was a good person whose company I enjoyed over all his years as a player and after that. I feel a great loss at his passing.”

The reason you probably don’t remember Cook today is because in the third game of his rookie season, he suffered a bad shoulder injury that was later diagnosed as a torn rotator cuff. He missed the next three games, but returned for the final half of the season to finish his rookie year on a high note.

But after undergoing several surgeries to repair his shoulder, Cook would play only one more game in his career, throwing just three passes in 1973 before disappearing into the Cincinnati landscape.

Yet, Cook was a godsend for Walsh, who was helping run the Bengals offense. He had expected Cook to return for his second season in 1970, and Walsh planned to continue using Cook’s big arm to mold a downfield vertical passing attack. But without Cook, the Bengals had to go with backup Virgil Carter, who was not as talented but was considering a quick-thinking quarterback.

As Sports Illustrated’s Paul Zimmerman wrote in 2001, “Carter was able to go through his progressions quickly and throw on the go; not blessed with a big arm, but accurate. So Walsh crafted an offense to suit him, a horizontal offense with a lot of motion and underneath routes and breakoff patterns, an attack that now goes by the misnomer ‘West Coast Offense.’”

It’s a misnomer because, although Walsh had his greatest success in San Francisco, the idea was hatched in the Midwest. And though the man from whom Walsh took much of his cues in developing the offense was a longtime Los Angeles Rams and San Diego Chargers coach, Sid Gillman had started making his passing game more horizontal when he coach at Miami (Ohio) and the University of Cincinnati in the 1940s and 1950s.

Once, Zimmerman asked Walsh how much his system would have changed if Cook had a long career. “Completely different," he said. "It would have been down the field."

And thus, how much differently would the NFL look today without the West Coast offense and Cook’s contribution? I imagine it wasn’t any consolation to Cook, but without his injury, the league could have been a vastly-different, less-exciting place.

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Posted on: January 12, 2012 9:51 am
 

Jackson thinks 'I could have done it different'

JacksonBy Josh Katzowitz

On the heels of Yahoo Sports’ Michael Silver’s initial interview with just-fired Raiders coach Hue Jackson, in which Jackson said he believed Oakland owner Mark Davis was the one who wanted him gone, Jackson participated in Rich Eisen’s podcast Wednesday to offer more insight into how and why he was let go.

While the Raiders are moving forward with the news that they’ll interview Todd Bowles for the head coaching job, Jackson and Eisen took a look back at what happened since general manager Reggie McKenzie was hired in Oakland.

A few highlights from the interview:

So, um, what happened? “A the end of the day, I didn’t win enough games, didn’t get to the playoffs. Once Mark saw where the franchise was, after he hired Reggie, he gave Reggie the opportunity to bring in his own coach.”

Did your comments after the Week 17 loss to the Chargers hurt you? “It could be. When you look at anything, it could have been the one thing that turned it the other way. Do I wish I could have done it different? Yeah. Normally after a game, I go in and shower and put on my suit and go talk. On that particular day, I didn’t do that. I was emotional. It was a big game for our football team for the opportunity to have a nine-win season for the first time since ‘02,  an opportunity to win the AFC West outright, to host a playoff game the next week, to honor Al Davis’ death. There was a lot riding on it and not to play like I thought we could, what spilled out of me was the emotional side.

“But I think everybody took that wrong. Was I disappointed and pissed off? Yes. But when I said I wanted to be involved in every aspect of the football game, I was saying that because I didn’t have the opportunity to do that. This was Al Davis’ team. This is what he wanted on the football team. The point I was trying to make moving forward, whether it be with the staff or schematically, I can now make those changes because the 2011 season had already been in place and wasn’t going to change.”

On how much impact he had on the Carson Palmer trade: “All I did was help facilitate that because I have a relationship with Carson and had a relationship with (Bengals owner) Mike Brown. There’s been so many reports that I did the deal. I don’t do deals. I’m not the general manager. I’m the coach. But I opened the line of communication, and the rest of it was done within our organization with our team of people.”

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Posted on: January 4, 2012 10:23 am
Edited on: January 4, 2012 1:47 pm
 

2012 NFL Postseason Awards

Brees and Rodgers could square off three times this year, if you count awards. (Getty Images)
By Will Brinson

We won't bore you by listing our preseason predictions (you can read those here), but suffice to say, all of mine were correct. Take a peak at the midseason hardware if you want too, but right now we're interested in dishing out the awards for the full season.


Speaking of which, I've already ranted on Drew Brees vs. Aaron Rodgers for the MVP, but I find it fascinating that at midseason, no one even picked Brees for Offensive Player of the Year, much less MVP. I'm not here to knock Brees, I'm just saying the award's for an entire season's worth of work.

Anyway, below are our full season picks. (You can also read Pete's full season picks here and Clark's full season picks here.)

Most are obvious but "BFA" is "Best Free Agent Addition," "WFA" is "Worst Free Agent Addition," and "DOH!" is "Pick I'd Like to Have Back." (Haha, yes I did pick the guy who eventually iced his own kicker to win "Coach of the Year." At least I was driving the Camwagon though.)

Dive in below and leave your gripes and complaints in the comments.

Award Brinson
Wilson
Katzowitz
Prisco
Judge
MVP
Aaron Rodgers Aaron Rodgers Aaron Rodgers Aaron Rodgers Aaron Rodgers
OPOY
Drew Brees Aaron Rodgers Aaron Rodgers Drew Brees Drew Brees
DPOY
Jared Allen Terrell Suggs Jared Allen Jason Pierre-Paul Jared Allen
OROY
Cam Newton Cam Newton Cam Newton Cam Newton Cam Newton
DROY
Von Miller Aldon Smith Aldon Smith Von Miller Von Miller
COY
Marvin Lewis Jim Harbaugh Jim Harbaugh Jim Harbaugh Jim Harbaugh
ASST
Rob Chudzinski Rob Chudzinski Wade Phillips Wade Phillips Wade Phillips
BFA
Darren Sproles Darren Sproles Darren Sproles Darren Sproles Darren Sproles
WFA
Sidney Rice Braylon Edwards Santonio Holmes Ray Edwards Ray Edwards
Comeback
Steve Smith D'Qwell Jackson Aaron Maybin Matthew Stafford Matthew Stafford
Most Improved
Matthew Stafford Antonio Brown Victor Cruz Rob Gronkowski Rob Gronkowski
Surprise
Bengals Broncos Broncos Bengals 49ers
Disappoint
Eagles Jets Eagles Eagles Eagles
Executive
Rick Smith Rick Smith Rick Smith Martin Mayhew Mike Brown
DOH!
Garrett for COY Rivers for MVP Rivers for MVP Fins in/Lions out Rams in NFCW

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Posted on: December 23, 2011 6:41 pm
Edited on: December 23, 2011 10:03 pm
 

Mike Brown now owns most of Bengals franchise

Mike Brown owns all but a handful of team shares now (US Presswire).By Josh Katzowitz

Bengals owner Mike Brown just got a little richer. Well, that’s not necessarily true. He owns a little more of his team today -- which might, in effect, make him slightly poorer. Either way, Brown purchased the minority share of the franchise held by the estate of one of the team’s co-founders, Austin Knowlton.

According to the Cincinnati Enquirer, Brown purchased about 30 percent of the Bengals for $200 million.

The team announced the sale today, saying that although Knowlton’s estate had already reached terms to sell its team shares to New York investors, Brown had a right to match the terms of that deal. Which is exactly what he did.

“This transaction solidifies the local ownership of the Cincinnati Bengals, with the Brown family continuing to hold the controlling interest,” the Bengals said in their statement. “The Bengals have been locally owned since the Club’s inception in the mid-1960s and, as a result, have enjoyed long-term stability. The Club’s football operations will not be affected by the transaction and no further or carry-on transactions are contemplated.”

“We are proud to be the owners of the NFL’s Cincinnati franchise,” Brown said in his statement. “We are committed to steps that will continue the Bengals as an asset for Greater Cincinnati.”

This means the Brown family owns most of the 586 team shares, and according to an economics professor reached by the Enquirer, the purchase “will do wonders for Mike Brown’s balance sheet.’’ So, it might make him richer, after all.

And it will make sure that whatever Brown wants to do with his squad -- whether that’s making sure the team stays in Cincinnati (or moving it somewhere else, I suppose) or simply continuing his reign as one of the most-disliked owners in the NFL -- no one has the ability to stop him.



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Posted on: October 30, 2011 2:40 pm
Edited on: October 31, 2011 2:32 am
 

Report: Bengals owner wanted Mallett over Dalton

Owner Mike Brown drafted Dalton but reportedly wanted Mallett. (US PRESSWIRE)

Posted by Ryan Wilson

During the 2001 draft, there were rumors that the Bengals, with the fourth-overall pick, gave serious consideration to taking Drew Brees. They ultimately selected defensive end Justin Smith, who had a fine career in Cincinnati but leaving for San Francisco but … well, he ain't Brees.

The Bengals ended up with the first-overall pick in 2003 and drafted Carson Palmer. And while Cincy made a couple postseason appearances, they never managed a playoff win. Last offseason, Palmer said he'd retire if the Bengals didn't trade him, and that prompted the organization to select Andy Dalton in the second round of the 2011 draft.

Turns out, according to a report from ESPN's Adam Schefter, that owner Mike Brown preferred Arkansas QB Ryan Mallett to Dalton. Mallett, by most accounts, was a first-round talent but dreaded off-field concerns dropped him down NFL draft boards. Mallett was eventually selected by the Patriots in the third round.

Schefter says that Bengals offensive coordinator Jay Gruden was "instrumental" in persuading Brown that Dalton was their guy, and through seven weeks, Gruden looks pretty smart (taking wideout A.J. Green in Round 1 wasn't a bad move, either). Dalton has started all six games, thrown for 1,311 yards (62.4 completion percentage), including seven touchdowns and five interceptions. Oh, and Cincy's 4-2. Dalton ranks 18th in Football Outsiders' QB metric, ahead of Joe Flacco, Jay Cutler and Josh Freeman (and just behind Philip Rivers, Mark Sanchez and Alex Smith).

But maybe Brown is finally getting the hang of this whole winning thing. First he was talked into drafting Dalton over Mallett, then he duped the Raiders into giving up (potentially) two first-round draft picks for Palmer.


The Cincinnati Bengals look to keep their winning streak alive as they prepare to take on the Seattle Seahawks at CenturyLink Field on Sunday. Jason Horowitz and NFL.com's Pat Kirwan take a look at this matchup. Watch the game on CBS at 4:15 PM ET.

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Posted on: October 27, 2011 8:10 pm
 

Palmer admits he was selfish by leaving Bengals

Palmer

Posted by Josh Katzowitz

Fans in Cincinnati have been upset with Carson Palmer ever since he walked away from the Bengals and (kinda, sorta) retired. They think he abandoned the team -- which he did -- and they think he was selfish. But he had his reasons, considering he knows exactly how the Bengals organization is run, and I think he had good reasons for not returning.

But … he was still selfish for leaving, and even he’s willing to admit it.

“Well it’s been a long eight years,” Palmer told KNBR in San Francisco (via sportsradiointerviews.com). “I’ve been through a lot, seen a lot within that organization, and just decided. I definitely realized it was a selfish decision that I was making. I talked about it a lot with my family and decided that I’d like to continue to play but it was time to move on. And it was time for them to move on.

“I’m just excited and happy and blessed to be in the situation I’m in now playing for Coach Jackson and with this organization. I’m excited where this one is headed, and it’s also good where the Bengals organization is headed -- they’re headed in a great direction. They’ve got a good young nucleus of players, they’re playing really well, and I think it worked out well for both organizations.”

So, did he think he would actually beat Bengals owner Mike Brown in a game of chicken?

“I actually thought I might not get a chance to play this year,” Palmer said. “I didn’t think (Brown) was going to do it and was hoping for next year. But if that was what it was going to take, that’s what it was going to take. But fortunately I got the chance to play this year.”

Palmers Intro to Oakland
And sure, the Raiders were terrible last week, watching as Kyle Boller and then Palmer threw a combined six interceptions, but Palmer is pleased to be reunited with Hue Jackson. Meanwhile, the Bengals have moved on with Andy Dalton. But still, that doesn’t stop Marvin Lewis from taking shots at Palmer’s willingness to remain loyal to the team that committed tens of millions of dollars to him.

“At what point did Carson quit?” Lewis asked Yahoo Sports. “At some point last year he decided he didn’t want to be here. This didn’t happen at the end of the season. There was a point earlier on when he said, ‘This isn’t the place for me.’”

Or as one unnamed Bengals official told Les Carpenter: “We got rid of all our [expletive].”

Which strikes me as blatantly unfair. But Palmer seems happy in his location. The Bengals seem happy with their new quarterback. And everybody can go along on their merry way.

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Posted on: October 23, 2011 10:50 am
 

Campbell found out about Palmer trade on TV

Posted by Will Brinson

When Carson Palmer was traded from the Bengals to the Raiders, we made the argument that the biggest loser in the whole deal was Oakland incumbent Jason Campbell. After all, Hue Jackson's decision to make a play for Palmer essentially sealed Campbell's future by the bay.

Cementing that theory, then, is the news that Campbell found out about the Palmer trade while watching television. In his hospital bed. With his fiancée.

"I was halfway still on pain medicine," Campbell told Bay Area radio station 95.7 The Game. "It was kind of a moment of silence. My fiancée looked at me to see if I was gonna say something. There's different things that go through your mind but you don't want to fill your mind with those thoughts."

Can you imagine how awkward that is? I mean, Campbell's a professional athlete and he's been through a couple Redskins regimes, so the guy knows a thing or two about getting punched in the stomach by a front office.

But the anesthesia on his broken collarbone hadn't even worn off before the Raiders had hauled him out behind the house and thrown his Oakland career in the (metaphorical) dumpster ... without giving him a heads up. And letting him find out in front of his lady.

"I started receiving these text messages and everything about, you know, 'Hey what's going on?' and 'There's been a trade' and everything, and 'They've just given up a first round,' " Campbell said.

Look, the NFL is a cold business. This stuff happens a lot and the Raiders aren't supposed to be sending flowers -- they're supposed to be doing everything in their power to improve their team.

It's just that Campbell, more than most players, has been on the icy receiving end of things over his career and you'd think they could at least give him a heads up that they were calling the dogs off on his career in Oakland.

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The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com