Marvin Lewis endorses him, but will Hue Jackson win over the Cincinnati Bengals front office?
Jackson, who joined Lewis’ staff in Cincinnati as a special assistant after being fired by the Cleveland Browns in October, is expected to interview for the Bengals‘ head coaching vacancy, a source told NFL Network Insider Ian Rapoport. The interview could come as early as Wednesday, Rapoport added.
Jackson’s interview comes after offensive coordinator Bill Lazor and special teams coach Darrin Simmons interviewed for the position earlier this week, per Rapoport.
Lewis’ 16-year tenure as Bengals head coach officially ended Monday on the heels of a third straight year out of the playoffs following a 6-10 season. In his final news conference, Lewis talked up Jackson, who served as his offensive coordinator before taking the Browns‘ head coaching job in 2016.
“I think he’s more than qualified,” Lewis said. “I think he’s been in a couple of difficult situations [in Oakland and Cleveland], and that’s tough, and it hasn’t broke his way. But I think he’s an excellent football coach, he’s a great motivator, he’s detailed. So I think he deserves an opportunity, if not here, somewhere else.”
Jackson was fired by the Browns after their Week 8 loss to the Steelers. His two-and-a-half-year run in Cleveland ended with a disastrous 3-36-1 record (.088 winning percentage), including last year’s 0-16 debacle. He also was fired after a single 8-8 season as the Raiders‘ head coach in 2011.
While he has Lewis in his corner, it might be hard to convince Bengals owner Mike Brown that Jackson is the right man to lead the franchise forward. It remains to be seen if Jackson will stay in Cincy or if he’ll have to find another NFL home in 2019.
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