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Published on 11/19/2012 at Mon Nov 19 17:36.
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(Jeff Gross/Getty Images)

With starting running back Willis McGahee out with an injury, Denver’s backfield has found itself in a predicament.

Rookie Ronnie Hillman has shown flashes of speed and elusiveness but cannot pass block to save his life.  Fourth-year back Lance Ball has never been more than a so-so back and Knowshon Moreno has been inactive since Week 2.

As of today, Moreno may be the team’s best option and activating Jeremiah Johnson from the practice squad is another possibility.

There is at least one more option, however, in free agent running back Tatum Bell, who would like a third chance in Denver.

“Broncos need to gone (sic) make that call [to] me [for] these last games.  Let me eat,” Bell tweeted on Monday afternoon.

During his last two seasons in Denver, Bell rushed for over 2,000 yards and ten touchdowns from 2005-06 before going on to have a mediocre season in Detroit the following year.  Two years after leaving Denver, Bell was brought back by Mike Shanahan mid-season and rushed for 249 yards and 3 scores in three starts.  At 31, Bell still feels like he has enough gas left in the tank to contribute again.

Unfortunately for Bell, the Broncos do not sound interested in bringing in any other running backs.

“Right now, we feel really good about the guys we have,” Coach John Fox said on Monday when asked if the team would bring in any free agents.  ”They’re trained in our system.  It’s pretty extensive.  We feel good about the people we have.”

Moving forward, Moreno, the team’s best pass blocking option at the moment, will likely be the starter with Hillman and Ball sharing carries behind him.

“We’ll see how practice goes and what our active list will look like next Sunday,” said Fox. “Next week, it’ll be more than likely Knowshon instead of Willis.”

What are your thoughts on Denver’s backfield?  Should the team activate Johnson?  Should they give Bell a look?  Dish out your thoughts in the comments below!

  • deuce rose

    I just hope we can protect our captain!!! We need Peyton to steer this ship correctly!!!

  • http://www.facebook.com/nikkisnae Nikulás Snær Magnússon

    i want to see Hillman start i know he is not the best RB to block but i trust him more the moreno and if we are going to pass with Hillman on the field they can trhow it a quik pass and lance ball is better then moreno just cut moreno and we are good he will injure him self again if he starts

  • http://www.facebook.com/jonmark93 Jon Broncos Heath

    Moreno is a great receiving option out of the backfield and is the team’s best blocking back. If Manning goes down because Hillman missed a block, Denver’s season would likely go down the drain as well.

  • TheTroglodyte

    Tatum just wants to steal out of McGahee’s locker. Not just no but hell no!

  • Mergrath

    Moreno will do alright so as long as he can stay healthy. We will miss the physical runs that McGahee brought but I think we will be fine. Probably activate Johnson and fill his spot with Xavier Oman who I loved in pre-season.

  • TheTroglodyte

    Agreed

  • http://www.facebook.com/nikkisnae Nikulás Snær Magnússon

    like i said if hillman is in a passing game it will be a quick throw and lance ball is a good blocking back but i fear that if we let moreno play he will get hurt

  • herc_rock

    Bwahahahahahahhaha.

    Good one, tatum

  • herc_rock

    We’ll be fine with ronnie and ball.

  • herc_rock

    When does travis henry get paroled?

  • http://www.facebook.com/jonmark93 Jon Broncos Heath

    A quick throw, as in about 0:03-04 seconds to execute? That’s about how long this play should take from snap to throw: http://www.nfl.com/videos/nfl-game-highlights/0ap2000000097027/Phillips-safety-sack

  • http://www.facebook.com/jonmark93 Jon Broncos Heath

    I believe he was reinstated by the NFL following his release from prison in August of 2012.

    He wants to come back, too.

    Everybody wants to join ya when your winning.

  • http://profile.yahoo.com/B7RY4NJ466KSWUHBF5KZR4DINE generic internet commentor

    Dont quit your day job Tatum

  • http://www.facebook.com/nikkisnae Nikulás Snær Magnússon

    that was not Hillmans fault ok it was virgal green that was blocking shaun phillips so yeah better look into the video befor you answer

  • Bryan

    LMAO..Whoa Tatum..Back away from the crack pipe..At this point, Bell has been out of the league longer than he was even in it.

    If the FO brings in anyone it should be Xavier Omon. He atleast has some familiarity with the coaching staff and playbook. And for what its worth, I thought Omon played really well this preseason and was surprised when he was cut.

  • http://twitter.com/wc_ben Benjamin DeRita

    I would love to see @tspeedx running again! He ran a 4.2 like ten years ago haha!! … but really would Rahim The Dream give up his number?

  • http://twitter.com/wc_ben Benjamin DeRita

    This just came to me.. Has anyone tried calling Clinton Portis?

  • anthony33

    No way I trust Hillman to start, at least not right now. He has not figured out how to run in the zone blocking scheme and he is a terrible blocker. He needs a lot of coaching and another full camp.

    Have to go with Bell and Moreno, neither are great options, but both better than Hillman at this point.

    Priority one is keeping Manning upright.

  • http://www.facebook.com/jonmark93 Jon Broncos Heath

    Didn’t say it was Hillman’s fault (but who knows, maybe he was supposed to pick it up), my point was rushers can get in quickly even on a pass that he designed to get the ball out fast.

  • Big_Pete

    I loved Omon during the preseason. I was quite upset when we cut him. I thought that Omon looked better than everyone but McGahee. I also think some other team picked him up though, didn’t they?

  • Doom92

    This gave me a serious chuckle… Tatum Bell…lmao.
    The sad part about it is that he is serious…

  • Bryan

    I thought so too but numerous sites are still showing him as a FA RB. Lacanfora tweeted yesterday that Steve Slaton, and two other RB are being worked out today in Dove Valley. I read somewhere speculating Omon was one of the others. Might just be a kicking the tires kind of thing, or it could be more.

  • Bryan

    There’s no way he was supposed or could have picked Phillips up. Hillman play actioned to the middle of the line. You can’t really think that it was designed for a play fake, then get back and pick up an edge rusher.
    But I agree with you on Hillman’s overall ability in pass protection. Of the 4 RB’s, Hillman is the worst of the 4.

  • http://www.facebook.com/Daday91 Daday Mitchell

    I think its funny how bronco fans discard the talent moreno has. He had a thousand yards total in his 1st 2 seasons yet hes a bust becauae mcd drafted him smh

  • http://www.facebook.com/Daday91 Daday Mitchell

    How can you possibly trust hillman more than moreno?

  • Bryan

    It doesn’t matter how quick the passing game is. If the defense comes though unblocked, it’s a big problem. Even if PFM does manage to get the ball out, he’s hitting the turf every time which is also really bad. Hillman may get the start but he won’t be getting the bulk of the work.

  • Big_Pete

    Man, I really hope it’s more. I was SHOCKED that he was cut. Like, absolutely shocked!!! Half the time, he looked better than McGahee, but I give Willis the nod because he did it vs starters while Omon did it vs 2nd-4th string players. But man, I’d love it if we got him. I think he was on Tampa Bay’s practice squad, but even so, he’d be “available”, cause all practice squad players are available for all teams. Only catch is if you pluck them off of a squad, you MUST activate them. So unless they loved him and decided to play him, they wouldn’t be able to snatch him up.

  • Big_Pete

    haha
    Desperate times call for desperate measures. Tatum is desperate, we are not. I’d rather take LT2 out of retirement than Bell. Only catch is that both would have to learn this new offense, that’s why I think if we sign anyone, it might be Omon or one of our current practice squad guys. We need someone who already knows/played in this offense. But man, yeah, Tatum Bell… hahahahahaha

  • Bryan

    Activating Omon may not be a big issue..Ball is likely going to be seeing more action on offense the next 6 weeks. If Omon can tackle and block, he can take Ball’s spot on ST.

  • Bryan

    LMAO

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Timmy-Devo/100002617267053 Timmy Devo

    Yeah…he needs to support those 9 kids he had from those 8 different women…

  • cbc2

    Denver should have NEVER gotten rid of Hillis !!!

  • http://www.facebook.com/jonmark93 Jon Broncos Heath

    Because he’s totally beasting it up these days?

  • cbc2

    Sorry there “Jon Broncos Heath”…
    Yo no entiende “beasting-it-up”.
    Probably a “Generation-Gap” relating to vernaculars.
    I’d go with Floyd Little..also….but I don’t think he would bother with it.
    Maybe Portis is still around?

  • cbc2

    “They” don’t call him “No-Show” Moreno for no reason…..

  • http://www.facebook.com/dan.gardner.9843499 Dan Gardner

    There really isn’t a shortage of useable running backs, there were a few decent names cut this past offseason. The Redskins cut Ryan Grant recently, and we still have Tim Hightower, Joseph Addai, Lonyae Miller, and I think former Jets starting fullback John Connor is still unsigned as well.

  • http://www.facebook.com/charles.weisenberg.5 Charles Weisenberg

    If Knowshon was a 2nd rounder, the no,no, knowshon talk might be muted a bit. Anyway, he will do, as would Omon.

  • http://www.facebook.com/charles.weisenberg.5 Charles Weisenberg

    Do you remember Jeremiah Johnson? Alfred Williams thinks he’s great. Maybe we will see him.

  • Rick James

    Might as well make calls to Mike Anderson and Reuben Droughns while they’re at it.

  • jcanyon1@msn.com

    Get your lazy butt up and call THEM!

  • http://www.facebook.com/nikkisnae Nikulás Snær Magnússon

    he will get injurd again and hillman comes inn