Cincinnati Bengals: T.J. Houshmandzadeh

In more ways than one, it's a brand new day in Cincinnati.

Another chapter begins Friday morning when team position coach Hue Jackson gets introduced as the team's newest offensive coordinator. Called upon to replace the now-departed Jay Gruden, Jackson will be tasked with helping take Andy Dalton to the next level, while taking some pressure off the quarterback by using the weapons around him even more.

Once a receivers coach, a defensive backs coach, an offensive coordinator, a head coach and most recently running backs coach, Jackson clearly has an extensive knowledge of the ins and outs of the X's and O's. Now it'll be about strengthening his rapport with the Bengals' Jimmys and Joes. Specifically speaking, his task the next few weeks will involve making sure the Andys, A.J.s, Giovanis, BenJarvuses and Jermaines who will be playing for him are all on the same page.

It's doubtful much of the terminology will change in the Bengals' system with the internal hire. Their philosophy will be tweaked a bit, but no major overhauls should be coming. Expect Jackson to say as much when he meets with reporters for the first time in his new role.

Many of the reviews about Jackson's hiring have been good. Only time will tell how well it pans out.

As expected, this Friday's Morning Stripes are all about Jay, Hue and the next steps for the Bengals. OK, maybe not "all." There's also one look back into Cincinnati's past. But we'll get to that in a moment:
  • Bengals.com's Geoff Hobson kicks off our look at Jackson's promotion with this rather lengthy item that contains comments from Bengals offensive lineman Andrew Whitworth and former Bengals receiver T.J. Houshmandzadeh. One of the first things Jackson likely will do, Houshmandzadeh said, will be to challenge A.J. Green to step up and be even better.
  • Other current Bengals are happy for Gruden's opportunity and are excited about working with Jackson. Some tweeted support for Gruden on Thursday, while Dalton released a statement that expressed his satisfaction with preparing to work with Jackson. Dalton also wished Gruden well, as did Green, who spoke with reporters Monday in anticipation of a possible Gruden hiring elsewhere. Paul Dehner Jr. of the Cincinnati Enquirer has both players' comments.
  • More change will soon be heading Dalton's way at home. His wife, Jordan, posted messages to Twitter and Instagram on Thursday indicating that she was pregnant. She even provided a picture of an ultrasound. The Enquirer has embeds of both social media postings.
  • In this 25th year since the Bengals' last trip to the Super Bowl, longtime fan Rob Weintraub has this nique look for Grantland at the innovation the 1988 team possessed en route to reaching the big game. This is long-form at its finest, so carve out a good block of time before going through it.

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