The Cincinnati Enquirer reported that multiple members of the organization, including coaches, learned of Lewis’ decision as they boarded a bus in Minneapolis for the Bengals’ game Sunday against the Minnesota Vikings.
The Bengals currently have no comment. Sources close to Lewis told the Enquirer he remains interested in coaching in 2018 and does not plan to retire.
Lewis, 59, became the Bengals’ coach in 2003, Heading into Sunday’s game, he has a career coaching record of 123-111-3 in 15 seasons, plus an 0-7 record in the playoffs.
After 15 seasons in Cincinnati, Marvin Lewis is planning to leave the Bengals after this season to pursue... https://t.co/fHYVQXFWgT
Lewis and the Bengals came to terms on a contract extension in the offseason, leaving him without a contract beyond the 2017 season for the first time since 2010, the Enquirer reported.
All of the Bengals' assistant coaches also have expiring contracts, which means the team could begin moving forward with head coaching interviews for defensive coordinator Paul Guenther and special teams coordinator Darrin Simmons, or look beyond the franchise, the Enquirer reported.
Lewis came to the Bengals as the ninth coach in franchise history after serving as defensive coordinator for the Washington Redskins (2002) and Baltimore Ravens (1996-2001). Before that, he spent four seasons as linebackers coach for the Pittsburgh Steelers.