Former Cincinnati Bengals running back Cedric Benson died late Saturday night, according to a report from the Austin American-Statesman’s Tony Plohetski.
Benson, 36, was involved in a motorcycle crash with a minivan in northwest Austin, where he played college football at Texas, that left him and another person dead plus two others injured.
Law enforcement agencies reported that the crash took place at 10:22 p.m. when a motorcycle hit a white minivan that was pulling out onto the roadway. According the the Austin-Travis County EMS, there were a “vehicle and person on fire.”
By Sunday morning, news of Benson’s death had spread across social media. His former Longhorns coach, Mack Brown, responded to an Instagram post by writing, “We lost a great one way too soon. #RIP”
Benson’s relative Dominic, meanwhile, posted “No no no no no no God no!!!! Why him man!!!!! Not Ced man” on Facebook.
Two days before his death, Benson appeared in a Travis County court room, where he pleaded guilty to misdemeanor drunk-driving charges that dated back to February 2017. There are no reports yet on whether either driver was intoxicated during Saturday’s crash.
Benson last played in the NFL in 2012, appearing in five games for the Green Bay Packers. He played eight years in the league after being selected fourth overall by the Chicago Bears in the 2005 draft. His most successful years came with the Bengals, when he eclipsed 1,000 yards three times from 2009-11.
Benson was a star at Texas, where he rushed for over 1,000 yards all four years and accumulated 2,013 total yards his senior year. He was Big 12 Offensive Freshman of the Year in 2001, a two-time first-team All-Big 12 selection, a consensus All-American in 2004 and the 2004 Doak Walker Award winner, given to the top running back in the nation.
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