Browns Handling Hillis Situation Better

Two weeks in a row now the Browns have made their determination about Peyton Hillis’ status early.  I don’t have any inside information as to what is driving this, but the lack of distraction is welcome.  It helps protect the Browns first-year head coach who struggled with those communications earlier this season and it protects Hillis from himself.  I’d like to think that the Browns and Hillis’ people got their heads together and finally decided that a media silence combined with holding Hillis out until he is completely healthy was the way to go.  The way things were going Hillis was hurting himself trying to get back on the field.  He was hurting his ability to negotiate a new deal.  The Browns were hurting themselves by not adequately preparing the roster for Sundays.  It was just a mess that boiled over into conspiracy theories as fans picked sides.

Ultimately, all the added negativity was totally unnecessary.  In my uninformed opinion all of this was just typical NFL business but blown out of proportion.  Peyton Hillis wanted to be on the field to prove to the Browns that he deserved his contract.  The Browns wanted him on the field to help develop in the offense and so they could figure out how much he is worth.  The agent and the Browns were obviously far apart on the number, but that happens all the time.

So the Browns have let the perfect storm pass and are doing everything they can to make sure that it doesn’t come through again.

In an ideal situation, Peyton Hillis gets healthy.  He contributes the last few weeks of the season.  Of course the dream scenario would be helping Colt McCoy and the rest of the offense find a way to beat the Ravens and Steelers in back-to-back weeks to end the year.  Certainly that is too much to ask of one player.  As good as Peyton Hillis can be, he can’t single-handedly win those games for the Browns.  But if he contributed enough to help the team do it, it would be a whole different kind of perfect storm.  It would be one that could send Hillis and his agent home happy, not to mention every Cleveland Browns fan on earth.

It may not be likely, but I can never be accused of not dreaming big.

  • oribiasi

    I still put the percentage chance of him returning at 30%. I just don’t see it as very plausible, and I wouldn’t be surprised if his agent is telling him to nurse his wounds and not injure himself for a team he won’t be playing for and is clearly not going to the playoffs.

    I also feel like Holmgren/Heckert/Shurmur just want a different kind of back, a la Brandon Jackson, perhaps Matt Forte. They don’t want a super powerful behemoth running back. They want a slasher, very fast/agile back that can make cuts.

  • While I hate to see Hillis out, this may help the team in the long run as it will most likely set Hillis price tag at a more realistic level.

    Hillis is on his third agent in the past year so it seems likely the new agent was asking for an unreasonable amount; hopefully that will no longer be the case.

    Plus, after missing all this time, how likely is it that Hillis will draw interest from other teams in the off-season?

    If the Browns can bring him back at a fair price, great. If not, well …

  • MrCleaveland

    I don’t understand why the Browns wouldn’t want to bring Hillis back if the price is right. Craig is right that this whole soap opera was blown way out of proportion and, in the final analysis, it was all meaningless. The problems Hillis is accused of causing are trivial. It’s not like he’s Randy Moss or Terrell Owens or any other diva you’d care to name.

    I can tolerate a little harmless drama in exchange for a guy who can bang out 1,000 yards, catch passes, and has a nose for the end zone.

  • @MrCleaveland I don’t think the Browns have ever wavered in their desire to keep Hillis at the “right” price.

    Obviously they’ll need to figure out if there is common ground between Hillis’ desires and what the Browns are willing to do.

    You don’t build a team by letting talent walk. You also don’t build a team by overpaying for that talent. It is a fine line to walk and hopefully the Browns and Hillis can figure it out.

  • oribiasi

    Craig is right; look at the Eagles. They SUPER over-paid for Vick based on his insane 2010 season. Teams have finally figured him out and he hasn’t been close to that season in terms of production.

  • Harv 21

    Mangini would have stolen a few games by claiming him to be a game time decision every week. Good times …

  • MrCleaveland



    I guess I didn’t express myself very well. I just don’t see how the Browns are handling the “Hillis situation” any better. They’ve downplayed and/or ignored this “situation” from the beginning, and they continue to do so now.

    The only people who are handling the situation any better are Hillis by keeping his tweet shut and the omnivorous media, who have spit him out as yesterday’s news and moved on to gobble on other trivia.

  • TikiHat

    Ah, Mr Cleaveland… I think there is more than a grain of truth in your last sentence. I also do think that the Browns are doing a better job in saying that Hillis is in or out ahead of time and premtively defusing the potential storyline.

  • Shamrock

    Browns can effect his price tag by not playing him which is exactly what I’d do. Business is business. If they play him he’ll reward them by leaving anyways. At least my way potential interested teams have to wonder. That and even Hillis won’t be enough with the remaining schedule.

  • brett cisco

    I would have to agree with the first half of “oribiasi” comment but im not to sure on what Holmgren/Heckert/Shurmur are thinking half the time when im watching the game I’m wondering what are they thinking but I do know this give the kid the ball and he will run with it.Holgren is going to have to come off some of his money if he realy wants a good team.Hillis is playing for nothing and he knows it.They should of gave him some kind of raise for doing so well in a way I dont blame him but on the other hand a deals a deal

  • Nigel Tufnel

    Peyton who?

  • elee

    for me this has been one of the more enjoyable browns seasons in a while. when watching a game i can see the future we have in front of us. and its not as bleak as many people may think. watching McCoy progressing has given me reason to once again say “wait til next year.” i may be in the minority by saying this, but i truly believe that we are headed in the right direction. the hillis thing started to bother me until i realized something. if this guy is going to become some kinda diva, then lets get a good look at the situation thru the rest of this season. then letting him go or trading him may not be a bad thing. if hillis is not the staffs preferred type of back, then let the coaches make the changes necessary. after all the main goal is to produce a winning club. overall i’m actually happy with the way things have progressed. of course more W’s would be nice!

  • John

    I think Hillis should be gone not because of what the media is saying but it is his decisions and actions off the field.How for instance can you screw up a kids dream by missing a childs event when kids look up to you just because you want to get married or because you stupid agent tells you not to show up.I would fire that prick and get another agent.Second off if Hillis isn’t old enough to go against what his agent says and use his own head for once and do what’s right for the team then maybe he needs to get out.His reasonings is selfish and ignorant and he makes up more excuses then a 2 year old.GET GONE HILLIS and GO BROWNS!!!

  • Wangbang

    Right Price=Yes
    Too Much=No

    Personally, I think he only has one real option for any kind of real money and that’s Cleveland…..There is still a connection with the fans here and Cleveland needs a running back.  Why would they draft a #1 running back when they could(try to) sign one who is already on their team?  We have too many holes still to fill and those top round pics can’t be waisted…..Is he a jerk for some of the things he did last year….yes…..But maybe he learned from his mistakes…..maybe not.