The Kansas City Chiefs continued what has been a wild first 24 hours of free agency by agreeing to terms with former Cleveland Browns running back Peyton Hillis. The Chiefs locked up the reigning “Madden cover jinx” poster boy for three years and $9 million.
Hillis suffered through an injury-plagued 2011 season after his breakout 2010 debut with the Browns. Along with nagging injuries were constant distractions and unhappiness about his contract and long-term future in Cleveland. Obviously it was for good reason as the Browns showed little inclination to commit a lucrative contract to Hillis.
Joining Hillis in the newest incarnation of the “Thunder and Lightning” backfield approach will be Kansas City’s current starter and fantasy football darling, Jamal Charles. With Charles’ explosive speed (assuming, of course that he can return to his pre-inury form) and Hillis’ power between the tackles, the Chiefs look to have one of the most formidable rushing attacks in the NFL.
One of the biggest factors in the former Brown and Broncos rusher’s signing with Kansas City is the presence of new Kansas City offensive coordinator Brian Daboll. Daboll has a history of getting the most out of running backs, including resurrecting Hillis’ own career with the Browns in 2010. Reggie Bush also benefited from Daboll’s scheme and had his career-best season last year in Miami.
Our Take: The 1-2 punch of JC Superstar and Hillis in the backfield is an exciting prospect. Considering how the Chiefs rallied around new head coach Romeo Crennel at the tail-end of 2011, and that the club retained Dwayne Bowe , we think the Chiefs will have a good chance to rush for 1500+ yards and 15+ rushing scores in 2012.
Senior Writer Gridiron Experts. 2012 FantasyPros Most Accurate Fantasy Expert. Member of the Fantasy Sports Writers Association. 26-year fantasy football veteran. Featured on NFL.com, Fantasypros, Football Diehards annual magazine, local AM sports radio, podcasts everywhere and SiriusXM Fantasy Sports Radio. Once scored 4 touchdowns in a single game for Polk High School.