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To shore up kickoff return, Hillis receives plenty of reps

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  • To shore up kickoff return, Hillis receives plenty of reps

    Hillis returning kicks is something I never thought we would consider. What I like about the idea is having the first person to touch the ball in the game would be hillis, also the idea that Mcd isn't wasting any time in taking care of any issues.

    To shore up kickoff return, Hillis receives plenty of reps
    By Jeff Legwold
    The Denver Post


    True to his word, Broncos coach Josh McDaniels has looked at some additional kickoff returners this week.

    Running back Peyton Hillis has spent plenty of time fielding kickoffs in practice. Hillis returned punts and kickoffs as a college player at Arkansas.

    Rookie wide receiver Kenny McKinley bobbled a kickoff and fumbled another Saturday at Seattle. Rookie cornerback Alphonso Smith also bobbled a kickoff in the game.

    Lloyd back.

    Wide receiver Brandon Lloyd, who did not make the trip to Seattle because of a leg injury, has practiced so far this week and said he's hopeful he can play Sunday night against the Bears.

    Lloyd had two catches for 42 yards against the San Francisco 49ers in the preseason opener.

    Footnotes.

    Running back Knowshon Moreno (knee), cornerback Tony Carter (ankle) and running back La- Mont Jordan (leg) did not practice Wednesday. . . . Defensive lineman Marcus Thomas (shoulder) tried practicing wearing a brace on his right shoulder, but he returned to the locker room early during the workout, then went into the team's weight room. . . . McDaniels said he expected some starters, such as quarterback Kyle Orton, to play in both Sunday night's game and next Thursday's despite the short turnaround . . . Asked Wednesday if he had spoken to Mike Shanahan since the Broncos traded him, Bears quarterback Jay Cutler said he hadn't: "Mike's been playing a lot of golf. . . . I wish Mike would buy my house. I think he'll be all right." Cutler's suburban Denver home still is for sale.

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  • #2
    I don't know how I feel about this. On one hand your getting the ball in Hillis' hands in yet another way, and your putting some sure hands back there in an effort to prevent turnovers. But on the other hand kickoff return is generally reserved for backup WRs, and RBs and while he may be a backup technically we all know how valuable he can be to the offense. Therefore you risk injury to him and possibly take away touches on offense. I would just hate for something to happen to him. And I don't really like how he has been used this preseason thus far by McD. Maybe McD is just trying not to show his hand, but I think he needs to utilize Hillis a little better on offense.
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    • #3
      yeah too true i know Hillis has sure hands but i dont like the idea of him returning kicks hes a beast but doesnt have the speed to take it to the house i would rather see him get carries then this....overall i just hope McD uses Hillis for goal line 3rd and 1 situations then that scrub joradan


      :go:

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      • #4
        Hillis is back there because no one yet has shown that they can handle the job right, im nit concerned about Hillis taking it 100 yards for the score Hillis can easily gets our offense to the 30 yard line or better everytime, its a field position thing i say smart smart smart strategy by McDaniels!
        sigpicGo Broncos! Heres to many more CHAMPionships!!!

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        • #5
          McKinley

          I've been the most surprised about McKinley's play. He's bobbled two kickoffs, fumbled one and had a costly drop last game. What's going on with him? Jitters? As many catches as he had in college, one would think he had better hands.

          I think Hillis would be a fine contributor in that role. I don't believe it's intended for him to start at RB. he's more of a flex guy who can do a lot of stuff well. I think Coach McDaniels wants Knowshon to start when he gets back into the rotation. But Hillis will get his touches.

          I would really like to see him used more in the passing game. Putting him at HB is exactly as I thought. All of his routes are swings. The coaches need to take another look at that Jets game last year. Hillis can do so much more than just catch passes in the flats.
          Last edited by Lomax; 08-27-2009, 08:27 AM.
          "Pey-Pey to Bay-Bay for the Tay Day!!"

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          • #6
            I'm not trying to second guess this decision but I just hope that with the way Hillis plays (physically and head on) he doesn't injure himself in this role. I can see him have some collisions of epic proportions returning on ST.

            I guarantee he's going to welcome contact with at least 1 guy on each return instead of just eluding. After all, that's what his game is all about.

            We do need someone to bring in the catch first and foremost. Even if there are no return yards -catch the damn ball first, and when contact happens, secure it. If you can't do that, speed and elusiveness really doesn't matter.

            After 2 weeks we're last in the NFL in TO diff. (I think) This has to change
            The beatings will continue until morale improves....

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            • #7
              I'm upset that Hillis isnt the starting runningback. Jordan is not a great runningback. He was always gonna be the next big thing but never was and never will be. Hillis has great hands, speed, and the power to bounce off tacklers. In otherwords, hes what Denver needs. McDaniels' decisions just make no sense to me.
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              I still keep to my 5-11 record. I dont have faith in McDaniels as a coach. Call me a hater or a Shanahan lover..whatever. I watched our team loaded with talent play a weaker opponent and lose. I've seen us replace a proven offensive genius (Shanahan) with a coach that took all the credit for Tom Brady's talent and watched our offense slowly turn into something you'd expect out of Detroit.

              Taken from http://forums.denverbroncos.com/show...=172513&page=4

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              • #8
                I don't like it . . . Same crap they did to him at Arkansas . . . a little of this, a little of that, and a whole lot of blocking for lesser talents . . . If they aren't going to use him for what he's best at, his best talents will go to waste here . . .

                "More touches" . . . laughable . . . maybe Mcd CAN TRADE HIM FOR A BOX OF JELLY DONUTS AND A COUPLE OF HOODIES . . . to a team which will put Peyton where he belongs.
                uhhh,this ain't Lou from Aurora

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                • #9
                  I see this as merely as motivational tool for the other returners for an important roster deciding game. While Hillis could go back in certain situations lets remember that there are usually TWO guys back on KR unless its a all pro returner . I seem to recall last week Smith and Mckinley fighting over a return for a couple of seconds .

                  Also did anyone ever consider he was putting Hillis back there to help with blocking because he doesnt want two guys back there fighting over returns .
                  "(Touchdowns) are the goal," Orton said. "You can run for as many yards as you want, throw for as many yards as you want, but you have to convert to seven points. I think we're going to be explosive, be dynamic, be versatile."

                  "Perception is everything in this league, and a lot of times, unless you're a self-promoter, it can become negative," - Kyle Orton

                  Kyle Orton Army member #83 :logo: :smug:

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                  • #10
                    as i stated in another thread i think its a demotion, another bad move by jmd.

                    i think hillis should be starting, his attitude, desire, and ability makes him the clear starter, yet jmd pushes for career backups to run the ball, i just dont get it, am i the only one who thinks hillis should start? he looks alot like jacobs from nyg.

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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by KO8pectate View Post
                      Also did anyone ever consider he was putting Hillis back there to help with blocking because he doesnt want two guys back there fighting over returns .
                      Read the article . . . he's not back there to block or he wouldn't have been recieving kicks and running them back . . .
                      uhhh,this ain't Lou from Aurora

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                      • #12
                        I don't see the point in getting all riled up about this... it's just practice reps right now... and didn't Hillis take a couple kickoffs last season? (I can't remember) If it makes us a better team then I'm all for it.

                        @ Lomax: I'm surprised with McKinley too, I thought he would be flourishing back there. It has to be jitters... he handled the majority of returns his freshman and sophomore years so he's done it before.


                        I'd personally like to see Buck take some kicks and punts. He's fast enough and wants opportunities with the ball. He was Philly's premier kick returner in '07, averaged over 20 yards per. Wouldn't hurt to for some of those younger guys to see some veteran hands back there.

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                        • #13
                          Originally posted by #1atwaterfan View Post
                          as i stated in another thread i think its a demotion, another bad move by jmd.

                          i think hillis should be starting, his attitude, desire, and ability makes him the clear starter, yet jmd pushes for career backups to run the ball, i just dont get it, am i the only one who thinks hillis should start? he looks alot like jacobs from nyg.
                          Oh, calm down. What on earth would make kickoff returns a demotion? Eddie Royal returns punts fer cryinoutloud! Aside from a kicker with his leg extended, nobody on a football field is more exposed and vulnerable than a punt returner for the first couple of seconds after the catch. In this offense, and with the versatility that Peyton Hillis brings to the the field, his position on the depth chart doesn't mean much of anything, and his contributions on ST is needed. Come the regular season, he probably won't be the first choice on KR, but he might be back there to block for whomever it is.

                          And he'll get his touches on the offense.
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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by Broncos Bassist View Post
                            Oh, calm down. What on earth would make kickoff returns a demotion? Eddie Royal returns punts fer cryinoutloud! Aside from a kicker with his leg extended, nobody on a football field is more exposed and vulnerable than a punt returner for the first couple of seconds after the catch. In this offense, and with the versatility that Peyton Hillis brings to the the field, his position on the depth chart doesn't mean much of anything, and his contributions on ST is needed. Come the regular season, he probably won't be the first choice on KR, but he might be back there to block for whomever it is.

                            And he'll get his touches on the offense.
                            it is considered a demotion, i dont think hillis will act this way because he is a great kid and student of the game, props to shanny. but i disagree with the decision to put him there, thats why royal isnt returning because he is to important to the offense, in my opinion hillis could be just as or more important, hes that good and i think its obvious, why dosent jmd.

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                            • #15
                              Originally posted by xxxlibertine View Post
                              Read the article . . . he's not back there to block or he wouldn't have been recieving kicks and running them back . . .
                              If hes going to be the second KR back then of course you want him to get a few practice returns in before putting him back there live .

                              However

                              If hes back there with either Smith or Mckinley then he makes a excellent lead blocker as the wedge is no longer allowed . If by chance the ball makes it to him he can return it but I have a feeling he will take the lead block position in front of whoever returns it .
                              "(Touchdowns) are the goal," Orton said. "You can run for as many yards as you want, throw for as many yards as you want, but you have to convert to seven points. I think we're going to be explosive, be dynamic, be versatile."

                              "Perception is everything in this league, and a lot of times, unless you're a self-promoter, it can become negative," - Kyle Orton

                              Kyle Orton Army member #83 :logo: :smug:

                              Comment

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