Cincinnati Bengals is a professional soccer team that competes in the NFL as a member club of the league’s AFC North division. Now, you can see them in the following Cincinnati Bengals Coloring pages.
After being removed as head coach of the Browns by Art Modell in 1963, founder Paul Brown expressed interest in starting another NFL franchise in Cincinnati; however, he was turned down due to the small size of a stadium in the city.
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As we know them today, Bengals began professional operations in 1968, but they weren’t the first soccer team in town. The Celts were the pioneers of the movement in Ohio City.
Between 1910 and 1919, they started in the Ohio League as a semi-professional team composed primarily of players from the University of Miami-Ohio.
One year, they became independent before moving to the American Professional Football Association (APFA, 1921).
Unable to compete (1 win, three losses. 14 points scored, and 117 conceded), they withdrew the following year to become independent again, before finally disappearing in 1923 due to economic difficulties.
Ten years later, soccer came back to town. Called the Reds, they played in the National Football League for over a year.
They were suspended during the 1934 season for non-payment of league dues, then replaced by the St. Louis Gunners for the final three games.
They hold the dubious distinction of having the lowest officially recognized scoring totals in NFL history (38 points scored in 10 games in 1933, 10 in 8 games the following year).
In 1937, the first Bengals were created by Hal Pennington. They were not linked to the current organization and played in turn in the American Football league II (1937), independent (1938), in the APFA (1939), and then in AFL III (1940 and 1941), before disappearing following the entry of the United States in World War II.
Professional soccer made a comeback 26 years later. On May 24, 1967, Cincinnati was awarded a team in the latest incarnation of the AFL created by Lamar Hunt.
The franchise was awarded to a local group led by Paul Brown. But the planning began three years before it began to play in 1968.
A successful founder and coach of the Browns for 17 years (75.9% wins, seven titles overall), Brown was only a minority owner in Cleveland and did not have the resources to buy out the remaining shares.
In 1961, Art Modell took control of the team and controversially fired his coach on January 9, 1963, after several disputes.
Eager to get back on track after three years of inactivity, he met with then-Governor Jim Rhodes, who convinced him that the state could host a second professional soccer team.
They saw Cincinnati as a logical choice, given its geographic location. In 1966, things accelerated with the merger of the two existing leagues.
The AFL was allowed to add a franchise with nine teams because its counterpart, soon to have 16 teams in its ranks, wanted an even number of teams in the new league. Both sides were satisfied.
The National Football League preferred to see a new franchise in its rival because it meant a dilution of talent. All other organization members had to provide players to the latest team in the expansion draft.
For the American Football League, the money brought in was the main reason for acceptance.
They were able to charge $10 million for the entry fee, 400 times the $25,000 paid by the original eight owners in 1960.
As stipulated in the agreement, the money raised provided the AFL with the funds to pay the merger fee.