The Bengals fired defensive coordinator Teryl Austin, as Josina Anderson of ESPN.com tweets. For now, head coach Marvin Lewis will assume the Bengals’ defensive coordinator responsibilities, a source tells Adam Schefter of ESPN.com (on Twitter).
On Sunday, the Bengals suffered a 51-14 loss at the hands of the Saints. Even without wide receiver Cameron Meredith, the Saints went off for 509 offensive yards and 44 unanswered points after the game was knotted up at 7-7. This was the third straight game in which the Bengals allowed over 500 yards and Austin has been blamed for the defense’s shortcomings.
For the last two years, Austin has been in the mix for head coaching jobs around the league. This year, he pushed for the Lions to promote him from defensive coordinator to head coach after Jim Caldwell was fired, but the team was dead set on hiring Matt Patricia. When that became apparent to Austin, he hooked on with the Bengals to serve under Lewis.
Now, Austin’s time in Cincinnati is up after just one year. And, fair or not, Austin is now even further away from getting his big break as a head coach.
The Bengals are now 5-4, meaning that their playoff hopes are alive, though they have some ground to make up if they hope to beat out the 6-2-1 Steelers for the AFC North crown.
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