The Cincinnati Chapter of the Pro Football Writers of America today named running back Jeremy Hill as the Bengals’ 2014 Most Valuable Player and defensive tackle Devon Still as the recipient of the organization’s annual "Good Guy" award.
Hill is the second rookie to win the MVP award, following quarterback Andy Dalton in 2011. Hill rushed for a team-high 1,124 yards and nine touchdowns. His rushing total was the best among all NFL rookies and was just five yards shy of Corey Dillon’s franchise rookie record. It included five 100-yard games. Hill is the first Bengals running back to have four games of 140 yards or more.
In voting by the six writers who cover the team daily, Hill received four first-place votes, while offensive tackle Andrew Whitworth and cornerback Adam Jones each received one. Balloting is done on a points system where writers list three players, and Hill finished with 22 points. Five different players received votes in the MVP balloting. Voting totals for both awards are at the bottom of this release.
"The Bengals have been at their best this season when they effectively run the ball, and Jeremy has provided that piece to the offensive puzzle this season," said PFWA spokesman Kevin Goheen, Bengals writer for Fox Sports Ohio. "The combination of Jeremy and Giovani Bernard gives the Bengals one of top running back duos in the NFL. He continues to grow and improve as an all-around player, which bodes well for his and the Bengals future."
Other past MVP winners were QB Jon Kitna (2002-03), HB Rudi Johnson (2004), Carson Palmer (2005), Willie Anderson (2006), T.J. Houshmandzadeh (2007-08), CBs Leon Hall and Johnathan Joseph (2009), Whitworth (2010), Dalton (2011), DT Geno Atkins (2012) and LB Vontaze Burfict (2013).
Still, who is in his third season, is the 14th recipient of the PFWA’s "Good Guy" award, given for professionalism and cooperation with media and understanding the media’s role in covering the team. Still’s story of perseverance and dedication to his daughter Leah as she battles pediatric cancer has been an inspiration throughout the NFL.
"Devon has been willing and wanting to tell Leah’s story of strength and courage in the face of a fearsome disease no matter how often he has been asked" said Goheen. "In what has obviously been the most traumatic year of Devon’s life he has been accommodating and candid despite the serious reality of Leah’s battle."
Eight different players received votes for the Good Guy award, demonstrating the overall appreciation and commitment the team has for its relationship with the media.
Past "Good Guy" winners have been FB Lorenzo Neal (2001), Anderson (2002), HB Brandon Bennett (2003), LB Brian Simmons (2004), DT John Thornton (2005), Houshmandzadeh (2006), DT Bryan Robinson (2007), G Bobbie Williams (2008), Palmer (2009), HB Cedric Benson (2010), S Chris Crocker (2011), Whitworth (2012) and DT Domata Peko (2013).
MVP: Jeremy Hill (4 first-place votes) 22 points, Andrew Whitworth (1) 13, Adam Jones (1) 9, A.J. Green 9, George Iloka 1.
Good Guy: Devon Still (5 first-place votes) 25 points, Wallace Gilberry (1) 11, Vincent Rey 5, Terence Newman 4, George Iloka 3, Andrew Whitworth 3, Mike Nugent 2, Jeremy Hill 1.