What Bengals coach Zac Taylor learned along the way to building a winner in Cincinnati – the athletic

CINCINNATI – The air horn sounds at the end of Rams practice at 5:30 p.m. on January 3, 2019. Zac Taylor sprints across the field at the Cal Lutheran campus and through a door leading to a neighborhood. After running about two-thirds of a mile, he’s home in Thousand Oaks, California.

He could have driven, but it would have taken up to three minutes if he had taken a red light. And he didn’t want to bring his car keys to practice.

Taylor spends 10 minutes showering and putting on the costume he had prepared. Then he goes to the Four Seasons Westlake. He walks into a boardroom 30 minutes after leaving the field, in time for an interview with Broncos general manager John Elway and other team leaders.

Twelve hours later, he’s back in the same room to interview Bengals owner Mike Brown, general manager Duke Tobin and others from the team’s front office. And 24 hours later, he’s in a suite at the same hotel to interview Cardinals owner Michael Bidwill and general manager Steve Keim.

A year earlier, he was an assistant coach on wide receivers. The year before, he was responsible for the 123rd NCAA offense as the Cincinnati Bearcats offensive coordinator.

Becoming a head coach in 2019 at the age of 36 didn’t seem like a realistic possibility for Taylor. But here he interviewed three times in 40 hours.

A day after the Rams lost to the

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