Jeremy Hill‘s hopes at rebounding and establishing himself with the Patriots this season endured a crushing blow in Week 1.
The fifth-year running back suffered a torn ACL during New England’s win over Houston, Ian Rapoport of NFL.com reports (on Twitter). Hill will miss the rest of the season.
A sequence involving Hill trying to make a tackle after a Rob Gronkowski fumble resulted in the injury that will end the former second-round pick’s season. Hill was down for several minutes after the play. Prior to that sequence, however, Hill played well. He gained 25 rushing yards on four carries and caught a pass. His highlight of his ultimately brief 2018 season was blocking a punt in the Pats’ 27-20 win.
Hill signed with the Patriots after his stock trended down as his Bengals run concluded. He received just 37 carries last season and played in just seven games, an injury bringing an early end to his Cincinnati game work. The former 1,100-yard rusher was a full-time player during his previous three seasons with the Bengals.
He signed a one-year deal with the Patriots and will end up collecting his $1MM salary, per Ben Volin of the Boston Globe, who adds that Hill had $281K tied up in additional per-game roster bonuses (Twitter link).
The Patriots’ running back corps has seen some eventful happenings in 2018. Dion Lewis, Mike Gillislee and Brandon Bolden are no longer part of the equation, and Sony Michel suffered an injury that wiped out most of his training camp. The Patriots released Gillislee after Hill had beaten him out for the team’s big-back role during the preseason, leading Gillislee to the Saints. James White and Rex Burkhead remain healthy, however, and will continue to be counted on as reliable cogs in this evolving committee.
Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.