Fancy fantasy football: Ronnie Hillman may rise

      October 23, 2012 @ 18:20:45 PDT


Perhaps this is the week that rookie rusher Ronnie Hillman makes a decent fantasy impression.

Denver Broncos RB Willis McGahee
McGahee could stand some spelling

He couldn't ask for a much better matchup, whether his owners play in a non-PPR or PPR format. Running backs have crucified the New Orleans Saints for more than 180 total yards and more than six receptions per game. Players at the position have scored eight times in six games versus that team.

A day after the Denver Broncos' Monday night victory against the San Diego Chargers in Week 6, John Fox noted that he's watched Hillman grow as a player. In particular, the head coach praised his back's advances in blitz pickup.

Hillman had more time to work on his ID of pass-protection assignments this past week because Denver was off. A preseason hamstring strain prevented him from working with the first team then, too, so he should've been able to brush up on the playbook.

All this could be a segue into a modest increase in PT for the 5-foot-10, 190-pounder, who had the ball 21 times in four games, most of those touches coming in a blowout of the Oakland Raiders in Week 4.

In a home tilt that could feature a lot of offense, Hillman may get a handful of chances to contribute. The Broncos have been wary of how much they can lean on Willis McGahee, and they'd certainly prefer to have their lead runner fresh for a potential playoff drive. Is Hillman up for that responsibility?

I'm not convinced that the San Diego State product is more than a breakaway threat, yet at least. He doesn't seem to have run some plays the way his line has blocked them. But Hillman was an interesting flier for some fantasy owners, and if they're going to get something from him in the second half, it could start in Week 8.

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About Nicholas Minnix

Minnix is baseball editor and a fantasy football analyst at KFFL. He plays in LABR and Tout Wars and won the FSWA Baseball Industry Insiders League in 2010.

The University of Delaware alum is a regular guest on SiriusXM Fantasy Sports Radio and Baltimore's WNST AM 1570.

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