Despite the solid numbers that running back Peyton Hillis posted over the course of the entire 2010 season, there is no doubt that he was worn out down the stretch. With no viable backup in the Browns’ backfield, Hillis shouldered an immense workload and it showed in his numbers. After scoring three touchdowns against the Carolina Panthers in Week 12, Hillis would not score another touchdown – rushing or receiving – for the rest of the season.
This is precisely why the Browns are considering a reduced role for Hillis in 2011.
It would be smart for the Browns to consider a reduced workload for Hillis, as his bowl-you-over running style leaves him susceptible to injuries. In today’s NFL, it’s nearly impossible for a running game to flourish without two viable running backs anyway. And with Montario Hardesty returning next season (remember him?), this change would be coming regardless. The only question, of course, is whether or not Hardesty can actually stay healthy.