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Cincinnati Bengals History | 1991 -



Paul Brown, the Bengals' founder and first head coach, and a member of the Pro Football Hall of Fame, died on Aug. 5 at age 82, at his Cincinnati home. The cause of his death was complications from pneumonia. His funeral was held Aug. 7 in his hometown of Massillon, Ohio. Among those in attendance were NFL Commissioner Paul Tagliabue, former commissioner Pete Rozelle, numerous team owners and eight Hall of Famers. Pall bearers included former Bengals Ken Anderson, Reggie Williams and Dave Lapham. As directed by Brown during his final days, the current coaches and players remained at work in training camp at Wilmington, Ohio during the days after Brown's death. But head coach Sam Wyche, a private pilot, flew his own plane from Wilmington to Massillon during a short break in his camp schedule. At the funeral, Pete Rozelle said: "Whether they know it or not, nearly everyone in the game of football has been affected by Paul Brown. His wealth of ideas changed the game." Brown's son Mike, a key figure in both bringing the Bengals to Cincinnati and in operating the club, took over as chief executive. The season, a major disappointment at 3-13, would be the eighth and final one for Wyche as Bengals coach. Following a Dec. 24 end-of-season meeting between Wyche and Mike Brown, the team announced that Wyche had unexpectedly resigned. Wyche interpreted events as his being fired, but there was no disagreement that his tenure had ended. On Dec. 27, the Bengals announced that WRs coach Dave Shula was promoted to replace Wyche. Shula, the son of legendary coach Don Shula, became at age 32 the second-youngest head coach in NFL history. (Harland Svare took over the L.A. Rams in 1962 at age 31). Mike Brown and Wyche went on to maintain cordial relations, and a disagreement over compensation for Wyche from his 1992 contract was later settled amicably. Wyche would go on to join the Tampa Bay Buccaneers as head coach from 1992-95. Prior to the season, the NFL announced new guidelines for media locker room access, action that had been sparked in large part by Wyche repeatedly expressing concern over the propriety of having female reporters in the locker room. Though the NFL maintained full access for all reporters, teams were instructed to screen shower areas from view, provide robes or extra-large towels to all players, and provide separate post-game interview areas for head coaches and key players.

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League Rankings

Table inside Article
OFFENSE 14 (310.6) 12 (113.2) 11 (197.4)
DEFENSE 28 (353.3) 13 (103.9) 28 (249.4)
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Year Totals

Table inside Article
OFFENSE 993 286 1811 3158 4969 263
DEFENSE 980 308 1662 3990 5652 435

Individual Leaders

Table inside Article
Jim Breech Scoring
Boomer Esiason Passing
Harold Green Rushing
Eddie Brown Receptions
Eddie Brown Receiving Yards
Lee Johnson Punting
Mitchell Price Punt Returns
Eric Ball Kickoff Returns
Jim Breech Field Goals
David Fulcher Interceptions
Tim Krumrie Sacks

Coaching Staff

Table inside Article
Sam Wyche Head Coach
Jim Anderson Running Backs
Dana Bible Quarterbacks
Marv Braden Special Teams
Dick LeBeau Defensive Coordinator
Jim McNally Offensive Line
Dick Selcer Linebackers
Dave Shula Wide receivers
Mike Stock Tight Ends
Chuck Studley Defensive Line
Kim Wood Strength

1991 NFL Draft: April 21 - 22

Table inside Article
1 Alfred Williams LB Colorado 18
2 (sent to San Francisco in trade on 4-21-91) 45
2 Lamar Rogers (acquired from San Francisco in trade on 4-21-91) DE Auburn 52
3 Bob Dahl DE Notre Dame 72
4a Donald Hollas QB Rice 99
4b Rob Carpenter (acquired from San Francisco in trade on 4-21-91) WR Syracuse 109
5 Mike Arthur C Texas A&M 130
6 Richard Fain CB Florida 157
7 Fernandus Vinson S North Carolina State 184
8 Mike Dingle RB South Carolina 211
9 Shane Garrett WR Texas A&M 241
10 Jim Lavin G/T Georgia Tech 263
11 Chris Smith TE Brigham Young 295
12 Antoine Bennett CB Florida A&M 322

Pro Bowl

Players selected for the 1991 Pro Bowl: OT Anthony Munoz