I'm going to be honest: I checked out of professional football in general (and the Bengals in specific) before the season began. The Adam Jones arrest, the hiring of Joe Mixon, the continued on-field bad behavior of Bengals players just added to my decision not support the NFL (e.g. brain injuries, Colin Kaepernick being black-listed) this year. Sure, I'm being overly righteous, but I felt — and still feel — OK not spending any given Sunday watching football.
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But — BUT! — this is my hometown, and darn it if I still don't want my Bengals to win. Of course I want them to win. Our sports teams, good or bad, add to the reputation of the city. I want that reputation to be as good as possible.
More than that, we, the public, have invested in the Bengals. No need to rehash the infamous stadium tax and its two decades of repercussion (looking at you, FC Cincinnati), but there it is. And think about all the money the good citizens of this region have spent on Bengals merchandise, tickets, etc.
Look, no one is going to turn the Bengals players into a bunch of choir boys. And we're still stuck with the stadium. But don't we deserve to have a team that doesn't embarrasses us? Shouldn't our return on investment be a winning team that doesn't melt down to the Steelers, or the Bears, or the cameras and lights of Monday Night Football? Aren't we worth it?
Kevin Necessary is the editorial cartoonist for WCPO. His opinions do not represent those of WCPO.