The Browns have been out of the playoff race for more than a month. In many ways, it feels like the story of their season and Peyton Hillis’ disastrous contract year has already been written.
Hillis has been injured, petulant, called out by his teammates, and unproductive.
But a funny thing happened the last few weeks while no one was looking. Hillis has played like the guy that he was in 2010 before he ever made the cover of Madden.
The bulldozing back has run for 211 yards over the last two games against two good defenses: Arizona and Baltimore. Hillis rushed for 112 yards on 24 carries against Baltimore, repeatedly pushing past the first tackler to get him.
We’re not saying Hillis has rehabbed his free agent value to where it was a year ago. Hillis cost himself a lot of money this year with his play and his attitude this year.
But at least the last few weeks has reminded teams that he could be a useful piece to the puzzle. Hillis is only turning 26 in January, and could be a decent rebound value for some team.
Just don’t expect that team to be the Browns.