Patriots running back Jeremy Hill is out for the rest of the 2018 season after tearing his ACL in the third quarter against the Houston Texans. The NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport was first to report the news on Twitter.
While pass-blocking on a throw from Tom Brady to Rob Gronkowski, Hill’s right knee was accidentally struck by the helmet of a falling James Develin while he had his foot planted. His leg buckled and he eventually left the field with the help of trainers.
The Patriots quickly ruled Hill out for the rest of the game after he exited. Head coach Bill Belichick had no update on Hill’s injury during his Monday conference call, but it was fairly clear to viewers that the injury was serious in nature.
Jeremy Hill's right knee was struck laterally, causing a valgus injury. Foot was partially planted at the time.— DocFlynn (@jessdeede) September 10, 2018
Best case: Significant MCL sprain, out 4-6 weeks
Worst case: Multiple ligaments - ACL, MCL. Season over.
Stay tuned for updates. pic.twitter.com/ok9FwmwId3
Hill rushed four times for 25 yards in the game prior to his injury. He also caught his only target for six yards. He made a pair of impressive runs to spark the Patriots’ late-second-quarter touchdown drive, where they started in the I-formation against the Texans’ smaller dime defense.
In total, he played 12 offensive snaps and six on special teams. He also partially blocked a punt by the Texans’ Trevor Daniel, showing why the Patriots trusted him on punt coverage over the departed Brandon Bolden.
With Hill now done for the season, the onus will be on rookie running back Sony Michel to step in as a reserve running back for the Patriots. He’s also dealing with a knee issue that kept him out of the entire preseason and on Sunday, but it’s considered minor in nature. However, Michel may not be able to contribute on special teams the way Hill did. That role will likely need to be filled elsewhere.
Rex Burkhead will likely be leaned on even more in the run game, but the Pats’ short yardage and goal line duties will be up for grabs. The Patriots kept Hill over Bolden, who signed with the Dolphins, and Mike Gillislee, whom the Saints claimed off waivers. Other than Michel, the next option could be rookie practice squad back Ralph Webb.
— By Matt Dolloff, 985TheSportsHub.com
Matt Dolloff is a digital producer for 985TheSportsHub.com. Any opinions expressed do not necessarily reflect those of 98.5 The Sports Hub, Beasley Media Group, or any subsidiaries. Have a news tip, question, or comment for Matt? Follow him on Twitter @mattdolloff or email him at email@example.com.
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