Bengals Head Coach Marvin Lewis Named AP Coach Of The Year

Bengals head coach Marvin Lewis was awarded the 2009 NFL coach of the year award by the Associated Press.

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Cincy Jungle: Marvin Lewis Knows How To Re-Build

Marvin Lewis gets - and clearly deserves - a lot of credit for guiding the Bengals to an AFC North championship in a season in which the franchise was struck twice by tragedy. Cincy Jungle points out that the chief reason Lewis deserves his AP Coach of the Year Award is his recognition of what needed to change, and his execution in making it happen.

Having already experienced a rebuilding season, Lewis knew what needed to be done. He forced the offense to change their philosophy to a run-first offense. And after signing several veteran free agents and drafting a class of players that has to be one of his best, the Bengals swept the AFC North, won the division and made the playoffs.

Credit is also given to Bengals owner Mike Brown, who decided to keep Lewis on board despite three straight seasons in which Lewis' teams won fewer games than the prior year. (Cincinnati won 11 games in 2005, 8 in 2006, 7 in 2007 and 4 in 2008.) That decision paid off, as the Bengals improved by six in the win column en route to a surprising playoff berth.

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Bengals Head Coach Marvin Lewis Named AP Coach Of The Year

The Associated Press has announced Cincinnati Bengals head coach Marvin Lewis as their 2009 NFL coach of the year.

Lewis reacted to the news on the Bengals officiate site:

"It’s flattering to me personally, but I think it’s in recognition of our coaches, our team, our organization.  I appreciate the honor, but it really is in response to what our team has done and what our entire staff has done, and our players. They should take their hat off and be proud."

Following a four win 2008 season, Lewis led the Bengals to 10 wins and an AFC North division title.

It's a deserving honor considering the circumstances surrounding the Bengals '09 season. From the re-emergence of a now happy Chad Johnson to the tragic death of Chris Henry, the Bengals head coach kept his team focused en route to nine wins in their first 12 games and a 10-6 overall record.

Lewis is just the second Bengals head coach to receive the honor. Paul Brown won the award in 1970 just three years into the Bengals existence.

For more reaction to the Coach of the Year news, check out our Bengals community, Cincy Jungle.

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