While most of the previous "CJ Awards" have had a variety of nominations from our contributors, we don't expect this one to have the same feel. It's more of a formality at this point, but we still have to give out the Bengals 2014 Rookie of the Year Award.
Giovani Bernard was the winner of this award last season and, by all indications, his partner-in-crime and fellow second round running back from 2014 will be the winner this year. The Bengals have had some of their most successful backs drafted in the second round with a list including Bernard, Jeremy Hill and Corey Dillon.
Here are the contributors' takes:
Alberto Luque (AKA muertasdetenas): Jeremy Hill. For obvious reasons. Revitalized a very poor running game and made us believe we had a chance.
Mickey Mentzer (AKA whodeyfans): Jeremy Hill. He improved the running game immensely.
Jason Marcum: Jeremy Hill.
Nick Seuberling: Jeremy Hill, no contest.
Rebecca Toback: All signs point to Jeremy Hill. No need to bore you with the stats (even though they’re pretty impressive) but Hill has lived up to and exceeded the expectations for his rookie season. Beyond Hill, much of the rest of the rookie class also excelled. Ryan Hewitt shined in blocking, while Russell Bodine started every game of the season. For Bodine, consistency going forward will be key, but both offer a bright light looking forward.