Upcoming Match-ups

Marvin Lewis Favored to Remain Bengals Head Coach in 2019

Marvin Lewis in pregame warmup during a 2012 NFL game.
Once again, Marvin Lewis, the league's second-longest tenured coach, is facing questions about his job security. Photo By Navin75 (Wiki Commons) [CC License]
  • Marvin Lewis’ odds to be the head coach of Cincinnati Bengals in 2019 are still very good
  • Having coached the team since 2003, is it finally time for Cincy to move on?
  • More importantly, which way should you bet this prop

When Marvin Lewis was first hired to coach Cincinnati, Eminem’s Lose Yourself was at the top of the charts, the second Lord of the Rings film had just finished dominating the box office, and Bengals fans had only ever known misery.

Flash forward 15 years and well… Eminem and Lord of the Rings aren’t as popular. But Cincy is still irrelevant at their best and comically depressing at their worst.

So why is Lewis still running the show? And why is Bovada favoring him to return next year?

Odds Marvin Lewis Remains Head Coach of Bengals in 2019

Will Marvin Lewis be the Head Coach of the Bengals for Game 1 of the 2019 Regular Season? Odds at Bovada
Yes -190
No +145

The short answer won’t shock you: oddsmakers know that this Bengals organization is not the brightest. But with the odds of staying much shorter than they would’ve been in the past, is now the time to jump on Lewis leaving?

Marv’s Rocky Tenure

Prior to Lewis coming to Cincinnati, the Bengals hadn’t had a winning season in 11 years, mustering just one 8-8 finish over that stretch.

Lewis took a 2-14 team and led them to back-to-back .500 finishes before the team captured their first division title in 15 years in 2005. Then, this happened.

Such became the legacy of Lewis.

While his 130-119-3 regular season record is by far a franchise-best for the Bengals, his 0-7 playoff mark is an NFL record: one not likely to ever be matched.

But while most organizations would eventually tire of embarrassing playoff ejections, Cincinnati owner/president Mike Brown –the human embodiment of ordering water at a bar then using their wifi – loves Marvin!

Where most people might look at that and see one of the most embarrassing, undisciplined playoff losses of all time, Brown probably looks at that game and sees that season’s 10th lowest payroll collecting an extra gate. (He’s cheap, is what I’m getting at.)

Lewis might never bring you to the second weekend of the playoffs, but he’ll also never lead a 2-14 squad. And that guaranteed mediocrity seems to be attractive to Brown.

That’s why after another disappointing 7-9 finish last year, that included some truly head-scratching decisions and quotes, he still offered Lewis a two year-extension.

What Alternatives Are There At Head Coach?

Lewis’s extension apparently does come with a team option after this season though, meaning Brown could let him go after the season and not incur any cost.

However, the rumor mill of potential replacements is not encouraging.

If 3-32-1 is the alternative, yeah, stick with Marvin. And it might be. Because Cincy isn’t likely to land any big ticket names out there. Looking around the league at other potential coaching vacancies, the Bengals should rank far lower than most.

Can’t see Lincoln Riley choosing the Queen City as the best of that bunch.

What’s the Play?

Honestly, it still feels like Lewis will be around next year.

Some reports say the decision will be up to him. It would take a real gut punch, like a Week 15 loss at home to the Raiders, to sway this conversation.

So rather than take the “No,” just back the Oakland moneyline that day for better value.

But I remain in the “Yes” camp for now.

Author Image

Eric Thompson has been with SBD since 2015, serving as a sports betting expert in NFL, NHL, NBA, and MLB. If you want someone who eats, sleeps, and breathes sports news and betting, Eric is your man. Having studied economics at university, he understands what value is and how to spot it.