Blog Entry

Will Cedric Benson return to Bengals in 2012?

Posted on: January 15, 2012 6:43 pm
BensonBy Josh Katzowitz

Bengals coach Marvin Lewis has wanted to get backup running back Bernard Scott more playing time, and if this Cincinnati Enquirer report is any indication, it sounds like that might happen in 2012. But it might happen because starter Cedric Benson – who’s hit the 1,000-yard milestone the past three seasons -- might not return to Cincinnati.

“From a consistency standpoint you’d like to get Bernard more carries, more touches and Cedric has earned the right to be a feature back in this offense the last couple of years,” Gruden said. “The more you give it to Bernard the more you’ve got Cedric over there scratching his head and not real happy. Really, to me, on a good football team nobody should worry about who’s scoring or who’s getting the ball so long as the team is moving.”

If that seems like a subtle shot at Benson from Gruden, that certainly could be the case. Gruden inherited Benson, and though Benson has resurrected his career with the Bengals, the team might really want to see what they got when they drafted Scott with the sixth-round selection in 2009.

But the fact is that the Bengals have pounded Benson the past three years. In 2009 and 2010, he carried the ball 301 and 321 times, respectively, and though that number decreased to 273 this seasno, he still had the fourth-most attempts of any AFC running back.

Considering he lost some carries to Scott from the previous two years, Benson wasn’t happy with his team’s direction.

“I wasn’t a big fan of it,” Benson told the paper. “Granted I don’t make those decisions or calls and I have to find a way to make it work. It was something they started soon after the first game. There was a vision where they saw the offense going. I may not like it or agree with it but I’ll make it work if given the opportunity.”

Thing is, he might not get the opportunity. He signed a one-year, $3 million deal before the 2011 season, and that means he’s an unrestricted free agent who could make pretty decent money on the open market.

But considering these are some of the free agent running backs that will emerge this offseason -- Peyton Hillis, Michael Bush, Marshawn Lynch, Ryan Grant, and Mike Tolbert -- Benson has to worry about oversaturation. And if that’s the case, maybe he’s better off taking a few less carries and staying in Cincinnati

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Since: Oct 5, 2007
Posted on: January 17, 2012 9:25 am

Will Cedric Benson return to Bengals in 2012?

It was reduced to a one game suspension, but even so I doubt that is why his carries were down. They're a young, developing team and Gruden's offense is geared for a more versatile type player, like Scott. Benson was there more as a buffer for the development of Andy Dalton, in case he didn't come around as he did. Hence the one year contract - I'm pretty sure that he'll be playing for someone else next year - in fact my money is on the Patriots.  And I agree, and they will most likely draft a RB in the 3-4 round - someone to compliment Scott.

Since: Jul 12, 2011
Posted on: January 17, 2012 8:37 am

Will Cedric Benson return to Bengals in 2012?

I think Benson being suspended 2 games this year is why his carries were down. You want 300 carries Cedric,then stay out of trouble! I'm not sold on Scott. I don't think he's a feature back. I'm hoping the Bengals go after a rb in the draft. I like the kid from Virginia Tech or possibly Polk from Washington. As much as I would like to see Benson return,I still think they need a big back with young legs to groom in the fold.I don't know if Benson wants to come back or if the Bengals even want to keep him. This off field stuff has to stop interferring with his play during the season or it's time to let him go...

Since: Jan 16, 2012
Posted on: January 16, 2012 10:43 am

Will Cedric Benson return to Bengals in 2012?

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Since: Sep 6, 2010
Posted on: January 15, 2012 9:51 pm

Will Cedric Benson return to Bengals in 2012?

Typical outsider that has'nt a clue what they are talking about.

Since: Dec 24, 2008
Posted on: January 15, 2012 6:58 pm

Will Cedric Benson return to Bengals in 2012?

Typical Bengals player. Only worried about himself, money, and stats...

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