RIP Cedric Benson — Former NFL Running Back Dead At 36

RIP to a great running back

How Did Cedric Benson Die? New Details On The Death Of The Former NFL Running Back At 36 Getty

On Saturday August 17, Cedric Benson was pronounced dead. The 36-year-old former NFL running back was out riding his motorcycle on Saturday when he was found dead by authorities responding to a report of a crash. He leaves behind a legacy in the National Football League, as well as at the University of Texas and heartbroken friends and family. Everyone seems to be wondering, how did Cedric Benson die?


1. College Career

While Benson is a famous NFL running back, he is arguably more famous for his college football career. He played for the University of Texas. He was a four year starter for the Longhorns. He made first team all American in two  of his four years. His 4th season was his best collegiate season. He ran for 1834 yards and 19 touchdowns. He was given the Doak Walker Award, for being the nation's best running back.


2. NFL Career

Cedric Benson was drafted by the Chicago Bears in 2005. He played there for three years, where he had 12 starts, 420 rushing attempts for a total of 1593 yards and 10 touchdowns. After three years he went to play for the Cincinnati Bengals. He played there for four years. He had 54 stars, 1109 rushing attempts for a total of 4176 yards and 21 touchdowns. Then he went to the Green Bay Packers. He had only five starts there, 71 carries for 248 yards and a single touchdown. 



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3. Drunk Driving arrests.

In 2008, Benson was arrested on two separate DUI charges. Both ended up being dismissed due to lack of evidence. In 2017 he was arrested on another DUI charge. Benson's lawyer was able to plead it down to a misdemeanor charge of obstruction of a passageway. Two days before his death, he was fined $200 and sentenced to two days in jail. Ryan Autullo reported: "Benson said he was unable to recite a portion of the alphabet and could count only to three because he played eight years in the NFL, according to his affidavit. The arresting officer detected a strong alcohol odor and noted in the affidavit that Benson mumbled when speaking with him. Benson refused a field sobriety test, but officers later obtained a warrant for a blood draw that showed Benson’s blood alcohol level at 0.10 — above the .08 legal threshold for driving."


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4. Charity Work

After retiring from the NFL, Benson started his own charity organization called NUFCED. The charity lists its objective on the website by saying: "Cedric Benson’s nonprofit foundation, NUFCED, helps nurture underprivileged families and cultivates educational development through community and school programs across the State of Texas." They add that they are: "Encouraging and inspiring youth, coaching them to work hard, overcome obstacles, make positive choices and live fulfilling lives."

5. How did he die?

On August 17, 2019 and 10:20 pm, authorities responded to reports of a motorcycle crash. He and an unidentified woman in her thirties were enjoying an evening motorcycle ride when a mini van pulled out and hit them. First responders reported that when the arrived on the scene, one of the vehicles was on fire. Benson and the unidentified woman were pronounced dead at the scene, while the two people in the minivan received non-life threatening injuries. It is likely the driver of the minivan will be charged with a crime. The night he died, Benson posted a picture to Instagram of his motorcycle and captioned in "my Saturday night" with two helmets resting on the top of the bike. 



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6. Public Statements

A lot of people have been making statements and posting tributes to the NFL star. His lawyer, Sam Basset said: “Cedric was not just a client, he was my friend. He was immensely talented and fierce on the football field yet most have no idea the difficulties he overcame to achieve what he did. Though imperfect in some respects, once Cedric was your friend you understood how kind, sensitive and loyal he was as a man. He was like a younger brother or nephew to me. I will miss him very much.”


Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers posted a tribute on Instagram to his late friend saying, "Very sad news today to hear of the passing of my friend and former teammate Cedric Benson. Ced and I became fast friends during his short stay in Green Bay, and would spend many lunch hours in the cafeteria talking about life and football. Ced was very smart and thoughtful and I always walked away from our conversations feeling like I learned something or wanted to go research something so that I could keep up with him in our conversations. Love and prayers to his family and friends, thanks CB for the inspiration, you will be missed. "

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Kaitlin Kaiser is a writer who covers Bible and astrology, pop culture and relationship topics.