"It's almost over."
That's what many Bengals fans are thinking as we head into the final few weeks of the 2010 regular season.
To put it simply, the Bengals were more "bungals" than we may have ever thought possible.
Many put the losses on the coaching staff.
Some put them on them on the owner/president/GM/cheap man in charge, Mike Brown.
But the bottom line is that players win and lose games on the field, and while there are certainly changes that will occur—at least we hope—at the coaching and executive side, there are players that need to go.
Ten players from a team that may end up with as few as two wins may seem low, but these are some of the bigger names on the team. These top-tier 10 guys have run out of time in Cincinnati's effort to win at least a playoff game during the Marvin Lewis era, so they have got to get out of town.
In no particular order, here they are...
Last year Antwan Odom had eight sacks in just six games before injuring his Achilles against Houston.
This year he has racked up an impressive four tackles and been put on IR again.
His contract is not up for another two seasons but the Bengals still owe him nearly $12 million over the next two years.
Why get rid of him, you ask?
Well, the bottom line is that if you can't stay healthy enough to be on the field, you shouldn't play at all.
With the potential emergence of Michael Johnson and Carlos Dunlap, why not go the way of rebuilding and dump the guy that has done little for you over the past two years and is approaching 30 years of age?
Here is a no-brainer.
Why should they keep a fat, injury prone, fat-jiggly tackle that has played about as much as a homeless man showers?
The answer is, you shouldn't!
Unfortunately for the Bengals and cheap-wad Mike Brown, it all comes down to dollars and sense.
The Bengals still owe Mr. Smith at least $21 million guaranteed, and he could potentially get up to $42 million over the entire 6 year deal.
I guess the bottom line here may be to not sign fat guys from Alabama who have problems with not eating 7-lb hamburgers in one sitting and then taking a nap...or getting hurt because they are toooooo fat!
At one point in his career Roy Williams was going to Pro Bowls and being considered a top DB in the NFL.
Now Williams has spent just as much time on the sideline injured as he has on the field.
Last spring he signed a one-year deal to stay with the team until the end of the 2010 season, which once again has him on IR.
Perhaps the most famous play during the Williams Bungal era will be the one he didn't make against the Broncos in the last year's opener where he played the man and not the ball, which ended up deflecting and going for a miracle game-winning score.
Williams will leave, and he should be packing as we speak. Mike Brown will not open up his pocketbook again for a guy that cannot even make the field half of the time...
When you think of a middle linebacker, you think of a tough, mean-looking monster ready to ram down your throat and go out your back side.
Well, with Dhani Jones, it seems like he is more ready to just be on TV than make big tackles and game-impacting plays.
Jones is always a guy that will get you a shade over 100 tackles, but that's it!
In no way, shape or form is he the guy that will be able to be the main man between Rivers and Maualuga.
His contract is up at season's end, and hopefully the Bungals do not go and offer this 32-year-old reality star any more bling for his production.
Ochocinco may be the Bengals all-time leader in many of the receiving categories, but one thing still catches my eye, and many others...
Six catches, zero touchdowns and less than 100 yards in two playoff games.
This for a guy who has run his mouth time and time again, and maybe even has quit on a few plays.
Chad's free agency year is actually in 2012, which means the Bengals still owe him nearly $6 million for 2011.
The bottom line is that there are teams out there looking for a WR that can do something for them as a No. 2 and are willing to make deals.
To this day, many still wonder why Mike Brown didn't take the Redskins No. 21 draft pick for him....
Andre Caldwell was one of Florida's many speedsters during the Urban Meyer era. As a Bengal he was given the chance to be a third-down receiver and return kicks.
So far little dividends have paid off.
Now I am sure some of you are asking about his game-winning grabs last season, and I say that is fine, but the bottom line is the guy is not getting any PT as either a KR or a WR, so why waste the time and effort any more?
In his career he has not even totalled 100 catches, and with the emergence of Jordan Shipley, it doesn't really make any sense to keep him on.
Caldwell is still signed for the 2011 season, but I say dangle him out there and see if anyone wants to throw an extra sixth or even seventh round pick your way.
Remember, guys like Terrell Davis and Tom Brady went in those rounds...
At the end of a horrible 2008 season, Cedric Benson seemed to be a light shining brightly at the end of a huge abyss.
Even in 2009 Benson looked to be our next "Rudi Johnson."
Instead, he has been our next Ickey Woods, as he has struggled with finding holes and holding on to the ball.
Benson, a free agent after the year, will almost certainly entertain offers. But my question is, why give a guy that has gone from hitting the holes hard to bouncing around like a speed back the chance?
Bernard Scott has proven to be just as efficient, if not a better back when it comes to hitting the hole, so why not give him a chance?
My question to Bengals fans, has this guy even played?
At Mizzou Coffman was an absolute stud, being named a first team All-American in 2008.
But since then, has he even caught a pass?
The bottom line is Coffman was simply a system TE at Mizzou. He can't block well and does not fit the Bengals offensive system, even if they split him out.
His deal is up after the 2012 season, but why not get rid of a mistake before giving Bengals fans two more years of nothing to talk about when it comes to Chase?
This entry is self-explanatory.
Palmer would never even be in the league if it wasn't for his older brother.
Jordan has thrown for a whopping 59 yards and two picks during his NFL career.
In fact, when his older bro went down in 2008, he wasn't even the next-best Palmer, as Ryan Fitzpatrick-Palmer filled in for the rest of the year.
Jordan will be gone when his contract ends at the end of this season, and so will...
This entry kind of makes me and many Bengals fans a little sad.
Going into the 2005 playoffs Carson Palmer was the next Brady, Manning and whoever else you could think of, but we all know what happened.
Since then he has been OK, but never that same guy.
This year his decision-making and problems with making adjustments at the line have hurt the Bengals in the worst of ways.
Palmer is still due millions over dollars over the next several seasons, but there are rumors that teams may be interested in trying to save Palmer's career.
In my opinion, the best place for him to go would be Seattle, where he could reunite with Pete Carroll and live on the West coast. If the Seahawks could offer to pay a part of his guaranteed salary over the next three years and offer some sort of player compensation, I say go for it.
Who knows, with a little "Luck" maybe the Bengals could once again win the NFL draft lottery!
On a final note, I did say that I would leave Mike Brown and the coaching staff off of this list, and I did.
But I would like to remind Bengals fans that behind Marvin Lewis we did have some of our best years since the Sam Wyche era, and he does deserve a little credit, despite the horrible collapse of 2010.
Marvin Lewis may simply not be the hot-headed dictator of a coach that the Bengals need to get back to being relevant again.
Nevertheless, before they officially fire you, I say thanks for 2005 and 2009, and at least giving us a reason to believe while you were in town.
Good luck coach! But I am sorry about your firing...