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FAN Take: Happy Birthday, You’re Benched

Posted on October 30, 2019

By Annalece Anhalt-Slaughter

FAN Take is a series that highlights trending events, issues, and decisions in the world of sports and analyzes how they may or may not factor into the Fan Controlled Football League. We would love to hear your feedback, so let us know what you think about each FAN Take!

The Cincinnati Bengals have had a rough first half of the NFL Regular Season, to say the least. They’ve come so close to winning games against the Seattle Seahawks (-1), Buffalo Bills (-4), Arizona Cardinals (-3), and Baltimore Ravens (-6) – but lost every single time. Realistically, we don’t see them pulling out a win until their games against the New York Jets (Week 13), Cleveland Browns (Weeks 14 & 17), or Miami Dolphins (Week 16). But, that all could change now that they have a new starting QB: rookie, Ryan Finley. You might be wondering, what happened to Andy Dalton? He didn’t fall victim to the NFL trade deadlines yesterday, but he was benched. On his birthday. Yes, really. What we really want to know is if the Bengals delivered the news to the quarterback on his birthday cake – could you imagine?!

While we feel for Dalton being benched on what should be a happy day for him, at the end of the day, it’s just business. With an 0-8 start, nobody should be shocked by the Bengals decision. Sure, the timing wasn’t ideal, especially since the Bengals have a bye this week, but they needed to get Finley up to speed and ready to go for their second game against the Ravens in Week 10. Naturally, we’re now wondering if the fans would be as ruthless if they were in charge. Fans, would you show no mercy with benching a player on their birthday? Maybe even sending him back to the practice squad? Or what about firing a coach? Are birthdays fair game as long as they aren’t a monumental one, like 50, for example? Or, like the Bengals, do you think it’s business as usual – no matter whose birthday it is?

Power To The Fans!

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From ‘Worst’ to ‘Best’

Posted on October 7, 2019

By Annalece Anhalt-Slaughter

While we’ve been giving Miami a hard time for being the next Cleveland Browns as they continue on their way towards a winless season, it looks like we should have been looking closer to home. The Cincinnati Bengals, ‘led’ by Andy Dalton (we use that term VERY loosely), were handed their fifth loss of the season by the Arizona Cardinals. Sure, he showed up for the second half of the game, but where has THAT Andy been all season? Honestly, we figured if the Bengals were going to beat ANY team, it would be Arizona. But alas, rookie QB Kyler Murray was able to lead his team downfield and into field goal range as time expired, resulting in a 26-23 win for the Cardinals. We won’t get in to how much we hate field goals being the deciding factor in a game, but we think you get the gist.

So what now for the Bengals? There are rumors that they are adopting the ‘from worst to best’ strategy, have come to terms with the fact that this season is over, and that they are banking on a rebuilding strategy. We’ve seen the same thing with the Dolphins, who have been getting rid of their best players in an effort to get as many future draft picks as possible. The Bengals certainly have some real talent on their roster they could ‘sell off’ for extra draft picks for years to come – we’re looking at you, AJ Green, Tyler Boyd, and John Ross III. Those potential additional draft picks, coupled with a good draft position from a winless season, could help Cincinnati rebuild into a spectacular team.

While a draft order has not been determined for the second season of the Fan Controlled Football League, let’s assume the model will be similar to the NFL with the order being based on each team’s win-loss record in the previous season. That being said, if your team is a few games in to the season and clearly isn’t going to get their act together, would you purposely tank the rest of the season in an effort to get a better draft position for the next year? We think a few radical fans might call for that approach, but for the most part, we think fans will do their best to salvage their season. We think the fans will try to bring in players from the reserves, get rid of their existing offensive and/or defensive coordinators, or a combination of the two.