To some Sunday afternoon observers, it seemed that rather than reacting to the fact that Oakland has a new coaching staff, the Bengals made the Raiders react to them.
Cincinnati coach Marvin Lewis was asked about the aggressiveness shown by his team in the 33-13 road win over the Raiders.
“Well, when you play four preseason games, they’re not going to come out with a new offense and defense. The coordinators have come from where they’ve come from," Lewis said of Oakland. "We weren’t quite sure what exactly (the Raiders had) until we started the preseason, and then you have a feel for what people are going to do."
Lewis said that faced with such uncertainties in a first-game-of-the-season scenario, there are always contingency plans.
"There’s always going to be things that occur in a football game that are part of the plan against you," the coach said. "I thought our guys did a good job of handling what we knew, and reacted to things that were a little different.”
On the other hand, the Bengals showed Oakland a lot that wasn't shown in the preseason, putting the Raiders on their heels.
“I think it's part of the offense we have," Lewis said. "The flexibility of our players, and their ability to line up in different spots and do different things. We’ve got to keep doing it better and better.”
Next up: San Diego on Sunday in the home opener.
“Well it’s game number two. It’s our first home game of the year. Game number two of the season, and that one is over with, and we have to move on," said Lewis. "We’re going to move forward one way or another. We’ll enjoy it a little bit, and then it’s over.”
Unlike against the Raiders, whom many Bengals had not see before, several Cincinnati players remember San Diego. The Bengals lost to the Chargers, 27-10 in the 2013 AFC Wild Card playoffs.
“I think a lot of the football team played against the Chargers last time we played them. If you look across the board, I think every single guy on defense except for Pat Sims and the rookies, and everybody on offense except for the rookies," Lewis said. "I guess Jeremy Hill would be the only one. But, the rest of the football team was here and a part of our loss to the Chargers here in the playoffs.”
Revenge will be on the Bengals' minds, beginning at 1 p.m. Sunday.