Cincinnati Bengals’ All-Time Sack Leaders
The Cincinnati Bengals began play in the AFL in 1968 and moved to the NFL with the merger in 1970. The team has a losing record overall as I write this in 2010, but has been to the Super Bowl twice, losing both times. The Bengals might be considered as a hard-luck franchise, but some years have boasted stiff defenses. One of those years was 2009, when the Bengals came back to life and won the AFC North. Here is a short list of the Bengals’ all-time leaders in sacks, keeping in mind that sacks did not become an official statistic until 1982:
Eddie Edwards (47.5)—Defensive lineman Eddie Edwards played for the Bengals his entire career, from 1977 to 1988, and probably had more sacks than what was accounted for from 1982 on. But regardless, Edwards leads the Bengals all-time with 47.5 sacks, and his best season was possibly 1983, when he had a career high 13 sacks, along with one fumble recovery.
Justin Smith (43.5)—Defensive end Justin Smith played for the Bengals from 2001 to 2007, and he ranks second in franchise history with 43.5 sacks. Smith had his best season so far in 2001, when he had a career high 8.5 sacks, and added 2 interceptions, 5 passes deflected, 41 tackles and 13 assists.
Reggie Williams (41)—Linebacker Reggie Williams played his entire career in Cincinnati, from 1976 to 1989, and he ranks third in team history with 41 sacks. Like Edwards, Williams probably actually had more sacks that weren’t counted. His best “official” season was arguably 1984, when Williams had a career best 9 sacks, and added 2 interceptions.
Tim Krumrie (34.5)—Defensive lineman Tim Krumrie played his entire career for the Bengals, from 1983 to 1994, and he ranks fourth in Bengals’ history with 34.5 sacks. Krumrie had a career high 5 sacks in 1984, but his best season was probably 1988. That year, Krumrie was a first team All Pro with 3 sacks, 3 fumble recoveries and a career high 152 tackles.
James Francis (33)—Linebacker James Francis played most of his career in Cincinnati, from 1990 to 1998, and he ranks fifth in franchise history with 33 sacks. Francis had arguably his best season in his rookie year of 1990. That year, he had a career high 8 sacks, and added an interception for a touchdown, 78 tackles and one safety (the only one of his career).