Originally written on Win My Fantasy League  |  Last updated 5/9/12

The Denver Broncos traded up to draft running back Ronnie Hillman in the third round.

Every time you see a team trade up for a player, you expect the team to get that player involved early and with KnowShown Moreno a PUP list candidate, Hillman should have every opportunity to carve out a change of pace role behind starter Willis McGahee.

Hillman uses his blocks well and has displayed good short-area burst on film and could surprise a lot of people given the chance to start.

Hillman has 4.45 speed but may be best utilized as a home-run threat, change of pace back.

Fantasy Analysis:

Ronnie Hillman – Hillman projects as a change-of-pace back and is reportedly not suited for third down duties, further mitigating his fantasy value. Hillman is a popular sleeper pick in redraft leagues due to the fact that Moreno is expected to begin the year on the PUP list. Hillman will still have plenty of competition in McGahee, Fannin and Ball, but Hillman has talent. The tape on Hillman is not overly impressive but he has shown the ability to hit a hole hard and explode once he gets the crease. In dynasty formats we will suggest passing on him as we expect Moreno to have a career resurgence with Peyton Manning and other running backs such as Turbin and Pierce will go later in drafts but have more long-term potential. Hillman is projected as a bye week filler with flex2 upside.

Willis McGahee – Willis McGahee will open the season as the starter with Hillman and others battling for the change of pace role. McGahee will likely see more open lanes than he has ever seen in his entire career as a result of Peyton Manning now being at the helm of this offense. McGahee looks like a strong RB2 with a flex floor. McGahee’s value is capped by the sheer amount of talent playing behind him, but they are all unproven which means McGahee will get the benefit of the doubt early on. Avoid McGahee as an RB2 but if you can land him as a RB3 or flex, you may well be on your way to a fantasy championship.

KnowShown Moreno – With KnowShown Moreno expected to begin the year on the PUP list Hillman will have little bearing on his redraft value. As for dynasty leagues Moreno and Hillman could eventually form a dangerous duo for Broncos. We like Moreno more than Hillman long-term but an even timeshare could emerge as soon as 2013. Moreno may go undrafted in many leagues but is a high upside roster stash in 12-team leagues and up.

Peyton Manning – The addition of Hillman provides some more talent to the run game, which should help open things up for the passing attack. Hillman will not be helping out on third downs but will help in the teams play-action game as an explosive back like Hillman will garner the defenses attention. Manning remains a QB1.

Demaryius Thomas – Demaryius Thomas and the other receivers on this team will benefit from the Broncos strengthening their run game, especially with Moreno expected to be placed on the PUP list. Thomas projects as a WR1.

Now for some highlights:

Written by Win My Fantasy League Senior Sports Writer/Fantasy Sports Analyst Raju Byfield (Rizzla).

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