CBSSports.com Senior Writer Pete Prisco recently wrote an article discussing each team’s most overrated and underrated player. For the Cincinnati Bengals, he listed running back Cedric Benson as the most overrated and left tackle Andrew Whitworth as the most underrated.
Whitworth will be entering his fifth season with the Bengals and deserves every right to be considered the most underrated Bengal on Prisco’s list. He started all 16 games for Cincinnati last season and was a key factor in the improvement on offensive line.
However, whether or not Benson deserves to be on the list can be debated.
After signing with the Bengals in October 2008, Benson showed high potential when he ran for 355 yards and one touchdown the final three games of the season. In his first full season as the starter, he helped Cincinnati transition from a team once known for relying heavily on the passing game to a serious running threat.
In the 13 games he played in during the regular season, Benson finished with 1,251 yards and six touchdowns. He also finished with 169 yards and one touchdown against the New York Jets' defense during the opening round of the playoffs—a defense that ranked first overall and eighth at stopping the run.
Benson set a franchise record by crossing the 100-yard mark six times in 2009. He ran for 141 yards against the Green Bay Packers—who allowed just 83.3 yards per game on the ground last season—and became the first running back to post two 100-yard games against the Baltimore Ravens in the same season since Jerome Bettis did in 1997.
With this in mind, is it fair to consider Benson the most “overrated” member of the Bengals?
Dan Parzych is the Cincinnati Bengals Examiner for Examiner.com.
He is also the founder of WhoDeyBengals.com.
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