When one player rises on the depth chart, another must fall. For the Broncos at running back, that meant third-round rookie Ronnie Hillman was sliding down the table when Knowshon Moreno ascended back to the No. 2 role behind Willis McGahee this week.
Lance Ball’s drop from No. 2 to No. 3 was no surprise. Ball was long pegged for that role, which will entail occasional use as an outside receiver or second back flanking Manning in the shotgun, in addition to the myriad special-teams duties he will assume. As a jack-of-all-trades, Ball fits the job description of the third running back perfectly.
But with Hillman, the drop to No. 4 came in spite of leading the Broncos in rushing in the preseason — despite playing just two games. If you’re looking for a reason, look no further than everything that doesn’t involve running and receiving.