The Bengal “Gabbies” are handed out at the conclusion of the season in recognition of those individuals that made outstanding contributions to the Bengals’ season. Next up is the Tim Krumrie Gabbie, awarded to the toughest player of the 2009 season.
- Defensive Tackle Tank Johnson: The “Tank” fought through painful plantar fasciitis all year to anchor the defensive line, and gutted through the injury while other tackles Domata Peko and Pat Sims were sidelined with injuries. Johnson showed the kind of toughness you look for in a defensive lineman, and made the award’s namesake proud.
- Quarterback Carson Palmer: The franchise quarterback played through injuries again this year, dealing with a sprained thumb on his non-throwing hand. To compensate for the injury, Palmer wore a glove on his left hand for the majority of the season and used his right hand for all hand-offs.
- Center Kyle Cook: Cook took over the starter job this past offseason and proved to be an invaluable part of the team’s turnaround. Not only did Cook anchor the offensive line, he often went one-on-one with the powerful defensive tackles in the AFC North, including Casey Hampton, Haloti Ngata, and Shaun Rogers. Cook’s aggressiveness, mean streak, and toughness helped give the team the physical persona that allowed them to win the division.
And the winner is:
Runningback Cedric Benson
In my view, this one does not require all that much explanation or detail. Benson was the one reliable thing in the Bengals offense in 2009. The man was a workhorse, a bell cow, a warrior.
Benson carried the ball a whopping 301 times. Considering he missed 3 games with injury, that’s an average of 23 carries a game. His 1,251 yards and 4.2 per carry average were vital to the team’s success as a ball-control offense, especially considering the complete ineptitude of the passing game.
Benson is smooth as silk and tough as nails. He runs low with good pad level and explodes through the hole. He turns two yard losses into two yard gains with nothing more than his resourcefulness, toughness, and refusal to quit. He is not intimidated by what opponents do and finishes all of his runs.
In short, the man was a gladiator, and is in my view, the toughest SOB on the team.
Congratulations to Cedric Benson! The 2009 Tim Krumrie Award Winner!
Agree? Disagree? Let us know by posting a comment!
About Tim Krumrie: The Bengals Gab toughest player award is named after former Nose Tackle Tim Krumrie. Krumrie was a 12th round selection of the Bengals in 1983, and went on to play 11 seasons in the NFL, all in Cincinnati. He was the anchor of Dick Lebeau’s 3-4 defenses, leading the team in tackles several times as a defensive lineman, something generally unheard of. He was a second team All-Pro and Pro Bowl selection in 1987, and a first team All-Pro and Pro Bowl selection in 1988. He finished his career with 188 games played, 13 fumble recoveries, and 34.5 sacks. He’s perhaps best remembered for breaking both his tibia and fibula bones in his leg during Super Bowl XXIII. The former Wisconsin Badger refused to go to the hospital, watching the game from inside the locker room. Perhaps most remarkably, he started the first game of the following season after an intensive rehab. He is widely regarded as the toughest man to ever wear Bengal stripes.
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