When the Cincinnati Bengals made Jeremy Hill the 55th-overall pick in this year's NFL Draft, it was only a matter of time before he passed BenJarvus Green-Ellis on the depth chart.
That didn't take long, as Hill took 2nd-team reps behind Giovani Bernard in the first on-the-field practice:
Giovani Bernard ran with the first team and Jeremy Hill the second team. BJGE behind them. #Bengals— Paul Dehner Jr. (@pauldehnerjr) May 27, 2014
This is the first of several OTA practices, so to say Hill is already the No. 2 back would be premature. More than likely, the Bengals are giving Green-Ellis fewer reps, because they know what he is. He's not changing after six years in the NFL. OTAs are often used as an opportunity to give rookies and younger player more reps than the veterans.
Still, expect to see Bernard and Hill as the top two backs by the Bengals' Bye Week in Week 4. While the Bengals are reportedly keeping Green-Ellis on the roster, one thing that could change that is another RB proving to be more valuable than him.
Could that be former Ole Miss RB Jeff Scott?
Few other observations from today: Dropped UFA RB Jeff Scott back to practice catching punts along w/ Tate, Jones, Gio. #Bengals— Paul Dehner Jr. (@pauldehnerjr) May 27, 2014
In case you've not seen Scott in action:
The No. 4 rusher in Rebels history, Scott started out his senior season with a 75-yard game-winning touchdown run against Vanderbilt, followed by 243 all-purpose yards in a win at Texas. However, he missed four games due to a thigh bruise and lower back injury, and then missed the Music City Bowl because of personal reasons.
If Scott proves to a quality scat-back and punt-returner, he could cost Green-Ellis and Brandon Tate roster spots.
Tate enters this season the incumbent kickoff and punt-returner, but he's on just a 1-year deal.