By Grant Playter | Staff Writer
Following their loss against the Houston Texans last night and record-tying two game streak of zero touchdowns, Cincinnati Bengals head coach Marvin Lewis revealed in a statement released to the press on Friday that offensive coordinator Ken Zampese has been released from his position.
“Ken Zampese has done a tremendous job for us for my 15-years here, and I have the utmost respect for Ken as a person and as a coach,” Lewis said. “But I feel it best for the football team to breathe new life into the offense, and that’s why I am making the change.”
Replacing Zampese will be Bill Lazor, the team’s quarterbacks coach. Lazor was hired in that capacity in 2016 after a lengthy career among many other teams.
“Bill Lazor has great experience in the league and as a coordinator, and I feel Bill can progress our offense the way we need.” Lewis said. “We have a lot of talent on offense, and we need to keep working to take full advantage of the personnel we have.”
This will not be Lazor’s first rodeo as an offensive coordinator. He served as the offensive coordinator for the University of Virginia from 2010 to 2013 before accepting a position with the Philadelphia Eagles coaching staff.
Additionally, Lazor was hired as offensive coordinator for the Miami Dolphins in early 2014, only to be fired part-way through a rough 2015 season for the Dolphins. He was replaced by his own quarterback coach, Zac Taylor, who continued his duties for the remainder of the season.
Zampese joined the Bengals in 2003 following a three-year stint in various coaching positions with the St. Louis Rams. He served as quarterbacks coach until 2015 when he was promoted to offensive coordinator. Lazor was initially hired to replace the vacancy Zampese left in that spot following the said promotion.
Lewis hinted at this development in a news conference held last night. When asked about Zampese’s offensive work on the team, Lewis said the following.
“He’s worked incredibly hard at this. He has good command of the things we’ve done. But, we’re not getting the results we need to get.”
Whether the team fired Zampese to try to right a sinking ship, or caused them to lose their way in the first two games, we just don’t know but Lewis thinks this move will help the team moving forward. The first test for the team is against the Green Bay Packers, which we will get a true sense of the structure that’s different between Zampese and Lazor’s offenses.