You have reached your limit of free articles this month.

Enjoy unlimited access to SpringfieldNewsSun.com

Starting at just 99¢ for 8 weeks.

GREAT REASONS TO SUBSCRIBE TODAY!

  • IN-DEPTH REPORTING
  • INTERACTIVE STORYTELLING
  • NEW TOPICS & COVERAGE
  • ePAPER
X

You have read of premium articles.

Get unlimited access to all of our breaking news, in-depth coverage and interactive features. Starting at just 99c for 8 weeks.

X

Welcome to SpringfieldNewsSun.com

Your source for Clark and Champaign counties’ hometown news. All readers have free access to a limited number of stories every month.

If you are a News-Sun subscriber, please take a moment to login for unlimited access.

Rookie RB’s role not defined but should be substantial


Cincinnati Bengals running back Jeremy Hill was one of the few second-teamers who saw more work than the player he backs up during Sunday night’s preseason game in Arizona, and the rookie made both an immediate and a prolonged impact.

Hill entered early in the second quarter, replacing Giovani Bernard after four drives yielded no points and two first downs for the first-team offense.

The Bengals put together long drives that resulted in field goals on Hill’s first two series, with the rookie picking up a key third and 1 on a 5-yard run on the first possession before churning out 5- and 10-yard chunks on back-to-back plays on the second drive, which also resulted in a field goal.

“It was good to see him be physical with his running,” running backs coach Kyle Caskey said. “We’ve just got to get him to be consistent with everything he’s doing. His intensity is there. He’s going to be really good.”

Not only were Hill’s 30 snaps nearly double the 16 he had the week before, but quarterbacks Andy Dalton and Jason Campbell sent the ball in his direction on more than half of those plays with 12 handoffs and five targets.

Hill finished with 48 yards on 12 carries and two catches for 10 yards.

“I thought last week I was in great shape, but I wasn’t where I expected I was,” Hill said. “This game I think I was in the best shape. I didn’t really get tired. I kept wanting to finish those drives and to continue to put pressure on the defense. I just need to continue to stay fresh and stay healthy and make sure however many carries I get that I’m ready for it.”

Hill didn’t actually finish his first two drives, as the Bengals brought Bernard back in when they approached the red zone.

It’s unclear whether the team will elect to rotate the backs during the regular season, but worth noting were the formations used against the Cardinals depending on which back was in the game.

Six of Bernard’s 10 carries came from shotgun formation, compared to none for Hill, who ran exclusively out of the I-formation.

“I’m comfortable with both,” Hill said. “Through OTAs and through training camp, I think I got a comfort level with the offense. We did a little bit (of shotgun in college), but not as much as we do here obviously.”

Something else he didn’t do much of in college but is already getting a heavy dose of in the pros is catching passes. Hill has been targeted eight times in the last two games, compared with four for Bernard the entire preseason.

Two of the three incompletions thrown Hill’s way in Arizona never had a chance — one was directed at his feet to avoid the rush, the other batted down at the line — but the third one is still haunting him.

Wide open while coming across the middle, Hill had the ball bounce off his hands on a play where he would have had time to get his head turned around move into the open field for a big gain.

“As a competitor you never want to drop a ball,” he said. “But the more and more you do this and play this sport, you’ve got to have a short memory. That’s something I’ve been working on. I’m just so hard on myself all the time and I expect greatness from myself every time I step out there. So any time let the team down or let myself down, it’s kind of hard.”

While Caskey was disappointed by the play as well, he said he’s not concerned about Hill’s ability to be as much of a factor in the passing game as Bernard.

“We had a good talk about that,” he said. “He’s going to make plays. We talked to him about there are certain plays that are maybe going to be harder to make, but that’s why he’s here. He can catch the ball. That is not an issue with him.”



Reader Comments ...


Next Up in Sports

H.S. Results for 4/22: St. Henry coach gets 500th win

John Dorner, in his 28th season as head baseball coach of St. Henry, won his 500th career game in a 12-2 contest over Fort Jennings on Saturday. Ryan Luttmer was 4-for-4 with three doubles and six RBI and Rylee Deitsch was 4-for-4 with a triple and three RBI to lead St. Henry at the plate. On the mound Daylon Lange scattered four hits over four innings...
Baseball: Loss to Tipp leaves Kenton Ridge eager for rematch
Baseball: Loss to Tipp leaves Kenton Ridge eager for rematch

Kenton Ridge’s chances of a No. 1 seed in the Division II sectional tournament draw are likely gone due to a 9-0 loss to Tippecanoe on Saturday at Tom Randall Field. That didn’t upset Kenton Ridge coach Aaron Shaffer, though. Instead, Shaffer is confident his team will learn from Saturday’s mistakes and be ready for a rematch against...
New Southeastern football coach Payton Printz: ‘I can’t wait’
New Southeastern football coach Payton Printz: ‘I can’t wait’

A familiar name has returned to Ohio Heritage Conference football. But instead of continuing a successful run at Triad, Payton Printz will be hoping to do the same at Southeastern High School. Printz recently was approved by the Southeastern Local School District to be its football coach. He succeeds Greg Bonifay, who resigned earlier this spring to...
Family leaves heartwarming note after sitting behind NFL receiver on flight
Family leaves heartwarming note after sitting behind NFL receiver on flight

You never know who is watching or how you can influence them. Atlanta Falcons wide receiver Mohamed Sanu learned that after getting a note from someone who sat behind him on a flight. Sanu tweeted a photo of the note saying, "This definitely put a smile on my face." The note reads: "Hi! You don't know us, but we wanted to thank you....
Powell looking to “move forward” after being renewed as Dunbar coach
Powell looking to “move forward” after being renewed as Dunbar coach

Darran Powell has been renewed as the Dunbar High School football coach. His status as coach had been under scrutiny since a series of events last season ultimately led to one of the harshest penalties in Ohio High School Athletic Association history. Powell, a Dunbar graduate, told his returning players on Thursday his coaching contract for the upcoming...
More Stories