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Lex Hilliard ready for chance to become Dolphins’ No. 1 back

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When the Miami Dolphins took running back Daniel Thomas in the second round of the NFL draft, it was an indication that the team views Thomas as its running back of the future — and maybe of the present, if Ronnie Brown and Ricky Williams don’t return.

But after three years as a backup running back in Miami, Lex Hilliard thinks it’s time people consider him as part of the mix.

“I’ve got to go out and grab it,” Hilliard told Omar Kelly of the Sun-Sentinel. “I’ve been privileged to learn behind Ricky and Ronnie, Patrick [Cobbs], even learn the fullback position playing behind [Lousaka Polite]. Given the opportunity I’m going to put my best foot forward and give this thing a run, give it the best shot I got [aiming for] the starting position. That’s what I want.”

Given the way the Dolphins’ coaches used Hilliard last season, it doesn’t seem like they see him as someone they want with the ball in his hands: He played in all 16 games but never had a single carry and caught just one pass for three yards.

But Hilliard is excited about what he can do in the system that new Dolphins offensive coordinator Brian Daboll is planning to install. Playing in Daboll’s system in Cleveland last year, Peyton Hillis went from an afterthought to a star, and Hilliard has a similar running style to Hillis.

Of course, if the Dolphins thought Hilliard could have a similar impact to Hillis, they wouldn’t have drafted Thomas.

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12 Responses to “Lex Hilliard ready for chance to become Dolphins’ No. 1 back”
  1. NFL Football Now says: Jun 1, 2011 2:57 PM

    Preseason star from a few seasons ago. Somewhat productive in limited opportunities, but one touch last season shows he hasn’t shown the coaches enough.

  2. hoobsher says: Jun 1, 2011 3:02 PM

    its called realistic optimism, lex. learn it.

  3. southbeachtalent says: Jun 1, 2011 3:12 PM

    I think this guy can play. He may not be a Ricky Williams but give him enough carries and he will match Ronnie’s numbers. He is explosive and quick. However, as stated in the article doesn’t bode well for him that the Fins went RB in 2nd.

  4. crunchyclam says: Jun 1, 2011 3:22 PM

    Rick James calls this “delusions of grandeur”

  5. kevinfromth says: Jun 1, 2011 3:59 PM

    As defenses are built more for speed than power, big, bruising backs like this guy can really thrive.

    He may not make it, but I always love to see a runningback just truck right over safeties and corners.

  6. phileborn says: Jun 1, 2011 4:11 PM

    I thought he actually played well a couple years ago. He is a bruiser. Why not let him have a shot?

  7. glorioholio says: Jun 1, 2011 5:09 PM

    If the browns thought peyton hillis would they have still drafted montario hardesty in the second round? I think yes, meaning Daniel Thomas’ drafting shouldnt be an indictment on Hilliard’s ability- keeping Ronnie or Ricky would.

  8. whoknowsnothing says: Jun 2, 2011 9:11 PM

    Thanks to the lockout we are witnesses to such a story.

    C’mon Man!

  9. peanutbutter&jelly says: Jun 2, 2011 9:37 PM

    i feel the fins should give him more touches he’s a hard hitting son of a gun and i think he would punnish defenses with more opprotunities

  10. jcd213 says: Jun 3, 2011 12:39 PM

    He’s the underdog, but who doesn’t love a good underdog story. Show us what you’ve got Lex.

  11. mikebutala says: Jun 4, 2011 12:13 PM

    I watched Lex develop a great running game with the Mt. Grizz and was very impressed, if you were in his way you were going to get walked on and run over. The man plays better when there is more of a challenge, challenge him and sit back and watch. Do it for Gorge Mungas the great Grizz fan looking down.

  12. frankdatank23 says: Jun 6, 2011 5:09 PM

    I expect miami to either sign deangelo, or resign 1 of either ronnie or ricky, and have lex and thomas fight for carries. I however think having Lex and thomas makes bringing back power runners ronnie and ricky unnecessary.

    Ideally they aquire deangelo, reggie bush, or sproles and let thomas and hilliard fight for short yardage situations with polite.

    Either way, if they dont improve their running game, they can forget about any QB on the roster playing better than henne did last year..

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