April 26, 2005
Chicago - The Chicago Bears and the Brian Piccolo Cancer Research Fund announced Olin Kreutz and Tommie Harris as the 2004 Brian Piccolo Award winners. The honor has been given to a Bears rookies since 1970 and was expanded in 1992 to include a veteran winner. The Bears players vote for the rookie and veteran who best exemplify the courage, loyalty, teamwork, dedication and sense of humor of the late Brian Piccolo.
Kreutz is the first player to be honored with the Piccolo Award twice as a veteran. One of the top centers in the league, he has been named to start he Pro Bowl for the NFC in each of the last four years. Prior to that stretch of dominance, the native Hawaiian garnered Pro Bowl alternate status his first two years as a starter. Kreutz has started 86 games over the last six years, including a current team-high streak of 38 straight. A full-time starter since the beginning of his second NFL season, Kruetz has played more games as a Bear than all but one current teammate.
A two-year starter for Washington (1995-97), Kreutz earned first-team All-Pac-10 honors each season. Football News and Sporting News honored him as an All-American preceeding his junior season. Husky coaches graded Kreutz as the team's top offensive lineman as a junior after he started every game and did not allow a sack or pressure in 10 of 11 games. He delivered a team high 90 knockdowns as a sophomore and was the only true freshman to see playing time in 1995.
Kreutz will play in his eighth NFL season this coming fall.