ronnie hillman 450x345 Rookie RB, Ronnie Hillman   Denver

*5′ 10″

* 185

* 4.45 40 time

*Peyton’s new play thing

This might be my favorite pick of the draft.  Now calm down, I’m not saying Ronnie is my favorite player of the draft, but if you combine, talent, situation, and opportunity then he is right up there.  Hillman came to us from SDSU and while playing in a pro-style offense for only 2 years (red shirt sophomore), he managed to become the Aztec’s 3rd all-time leading rusher.  Hillman is IMO a potential Darren Sproles.  In order to be a true Sproles-type back he will have to work on his cuts.  He is an okay cutter with AWESOME “field-speed”.   Hillman runs north and south very well and has decent elusiveness but not yet “sproles-esque”.   He will be a great COP back at the next level and like Sproles has a great sense of patience when running counters and draws.  Throw in the fact that he is tiny by NFL standards and you have another gazelle that gets lost behind the Elephants until….. BAM!   He’s passed you.  A great number of plays went the distance for Hillman for precisely that reason.  Hillman chose to come out of College a year or two early due to fiscal responsibilities revolving around his son and who can’t respect that.  He is a very hard worker and seems to be playing with that “little guy chip” that I just love…   …as a little guy grimace Rookie RB, Ronnie Hillman   Denver.    Hillman improved as a pass catcher in 2011 but still needs improved route-running.  He will be a perfect “dump off” option for Manning but it will be hard to convince defenses that he is in there to block.   Ideally Hillman will put on another 10-15 pounds without losing his quickness.

Now lets talk about situation.  We have a lot of questions to be answered in Denver but seriously I am drooling at this developing situation.  Denver is poised offensively to be a top 5 offense in this league.  All of this hinges on Manning’s ability to bounce back and lead this offense, so assuming he does, all the pieces are in place.  Denver has their #1 WR with Demaryius Thomas and everyone’s new favorite #2 in Decker.  Throw in a nice but aging 1st and 2nd down back in McGahee and now you have that “home-run” hitter out of the backfield with Hillman.  Put this all together and you have the makings of an offense that could put up some serious numbers.  Hillman is starting to gather a little steam recently, mainly for the reasons I just mentioned.  In rookie drafts he is going as early as the late 1st to mid 2nd. So at this point I wouldn’t let people know how much you love him as personally I would have a hard time throwing a 1st round pick at Hillman but I WOULD consider it for a long time.  We could be looking at the next PPR machine and if Manning can’t help him acheive that…then I don’t know who can.

 

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Burgandy 5-9-12