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Bengals Player Hailed as a ‘Class Act’ for Kneeling to Pray for Injured Opponent

Trey Hendrickson
Screenshots from X / @NFL

During a frightening moment in the Dec. 4 Monday Night Football game, Jacksonville Jaguars quarterback Trevor Lawrence collapsed to the ground after being stepped on by a teammate. Immediately afterward, Cincinnati Bengals defensive end Trey Hendrickson fell to one knee and bowed his head in prayer.

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Before that act of faith and sportsmanship, Hendrickson had helped Lawrence stand up, not realizing he was hurt. After Lawrence returned to the ground in pain, slamming his hand and helmet into the field, Hendrickson, an outspoken Christian, bowed beside him briefly in prayer.

Christian NFL Player Trey Hendrickson Is ‘The Real Deal’

On Tuesday, Trey Hendrickson’s gesture went viral, with the NFL itself calling him a “class act.” People praised the athlete on social media, writing, “Pretty cool moment,” and “Bravo to Trey for the concern.” Someone posted, “It’s the fact that Trey Hendrickson IMMEDIATELY prayed for Trevor Lawrence, a real class act.”

Another person wrote, “Literally one of the most standup, high character moves I’ve seen in a long time. Hope this goes viral, need more of this in today’s sports.”

Other commenters said they weren’t surprised to see the defensive end help and pray for an opponent. “If you think Trey Hendrickson praying for Trevor was performative,” someone wrote, “then you don’t know Trey. He’s the real deal.”

Tests showed that Lawrence, also an outspoken Christian, suffered a high ankle sprain. On Dec. 5, he posted words of gratitude on X (formerly Twitter). “Thanks to everyone for the prayers and everyone that reached out,” he wrote. “It is much appreciated.”

Bengals Pro Bowler: Jesus Means More Than Football

Trey Hendrickson, 29, began his pro career with New Orleans and is now in his third year with Cincinnati. Ahead of the Bengals’ appearance in the 2022 Super Bowl, the defensive standout, a two-time Pro Bowler, spoke about his faith.

“My Lord and Savior Jesus Christ is more to me than just football,” he said, “but it’s application and what I’ve read through my faith and my wife and our meditations and things like that…And its application for the game of football is very simple.”

Hendrickson continued:

Anything that I do on the field is to glorify [Jesus], through him for him for his glory…My life is a sacrifice, and the days after football will be the same as the days playing football. I try to encourage people any way to crack open their Bible, [with] Instagram, things like that, just look up the verse and continue to grow stronger in faith because that’s where it starts.