Bengals good choice for 'Hard Knocks'?

Bengals good choice for 'Hard Knocks'?
June 25, 2013, 9:30 am
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(Frank Victores-USA TODAY Sports)

There are two main questions about the Bengals’ return engagement with the HBO show “Hard Knocks” during this year’s training camp. Why would they consent to the intrusive presence of the documentary cameras just four years after last doing it? Why would HBO want them again?

Child, please, there is no Chad Johnson this time around. As the Cincinnati Enquirer’s Paul Daugherty writes, the Bengals aren’t the most compelling bunch.

“It’s a strange choice. … The Bengals are dull now,” he says. “We say this in the nicest of ways. They learned that winning and warrants don’t dance well together. Actually, the Bengals learned that a long time ago. It’s the rest of the country that’s slow on the uptake. …

“No knock on these guys. They’re football players first. That’s good. But as a rule, the Bengals are skillfully blank. [Quarterback Andy] Dalton might be on the cusp of pretty good-ness, and he might have a cool nickname. But the Red Rifle is as earnest as an ‘Amen’ on a Sunday morning. That’s not good melodrama.”

There’s also the matter of how much coach Marvin Lewis is down with this. He’s not big on distractions. (Though what coach is?) However, Lewis told Daugherty: “To be world champions, you must handle the media and other intrusions.’’ And being constantly watched could make the Bengals more focused.

There’s also this: After Cincinnati was featured on the 2009 program, the Bengals ran the table in the AFC North and won the division. Hoping for a repeat of that performance  could be worth letting the country get up close and personal with Rey Maualuga.