Ray Rice Should Make Us Appreciate “New” Cincinnati Bengals


Aug 28, 2014; New Orleans, LA, USA; Baltimore Ravens running back Ray Rice (27) watches their game against the New Orleans Saints from the bench in the second quarter at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome. Mandatory Credit: Chuck Cook-USA TODAY Sports

In case you hadn’t noticed, former Baltimore Ravens running back is in bigger trouble than we thought, as outlined by Trisity Miller on FanSided.com.   The elevator video released this morning appears to tell a much fuller, uglier story about Rice and his wife than we already knew, but it also brings home a realization for fans on the Riverfront:   the dynamic around the Cincinnati Bengals has changed dramatically in the past few years.

Even just a couple of years ago, it seemed like every time we turned on the radio or fired up Hard Knocks, there was a Bengal being arrested or mouthing off or just generally being a questionable citizen in some area of life.  From Chad Johnson to Ochocinco (yes, I know) to Pacman Jones to Cedric Benson, the Bengals could be counted on for some, um, entertainment even in the worst of seasons on the field.

There were far worse incidents than an aging Terrell Owens calling out his teammates on a national stage, but TO’s mouth was a pretty good proxy for what the Bengals were about.

Since Cincinnati drafted Andy Dalton and A.J. Green in 2011, though, it’s been mostly wins on the field and mostly business off the field.

Sure, there have been occasional slip-ups, but even those have been mostly contained and have generated fairly little buzz.

Maybe it’s because owner Mike Brown has finally pulled himself out of day-to-day operations.  Maybe Dalton and Green have taken control of the team’s personality.  Maybe Marvin Lewis has figured out how to make his players more accountable in their time away from team facilities.

Whatever it is, the Bengals have a calm around them that we haven’t seen in quite a while.   It looks good on them.

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