Hillis considered CIA career: The 2011 season was far from a conventional one for Browns RB Peyton Hillis. After being another apparent victim of the Madden Curse, Hillis says he considered retirement and a new career with the CIA (no, really). It sounds as though the fourth-year runner is backing away from those statements, but they’ve likely already set off alarm bells in the front offices of NFL teams looking for a free agent RB. Add to it that Hillis has fired his third different agent and any contract negotiations could become messy. The former Arkansas Razorback will need to prove to us that his breakout 2010 season wasn’t a fluke before we suggest taking a chance on him as anything more than a fantasy reserve.
Manning throwing better: What’s a week without another Peyton Manning update? The latest, courtesy of the Indianapolis Star, says that the rehabbing quarterback is “throwing much much better.” Gentlemen, start your rumors. If Manning truly is progressing as reported, the market for his services will only intensify. It could also impact the draft status of some QBs not named Luck or Griffin. Since Manning should have a large fantasy impact on whichever team eventually lands him, you can bet this will continue to be one of the top stories of the offseason.
Peterson running in pool: Not long ago, Adrian Peterson proclaimed that he hopes to be ready for the Vikings’ 2012 season opener. He is taking a lot of short, choppy steps in that direction — in a swimming pool. After having surgery on his torn ACL in late December, most believe it would be difficult for A.P. to be ready for the start of the season. Understandably, the Vikings would like their franchise back not to rush his rehab, especially after Toby Gerhart showed that he was very capable last season. Until we see how far Peterson has progressed and what he can do in live game action, he shouldn’t be a first-round fantasy back.
— Marcas Grant