Matt Sullivan/Getty Images
Peyton Hillis has his best season in 2010 as he gains 1,177 yards for the Cleveland Browns.
Peyton Hillis, whose breakout season in 2011 landed him a surprised spot on a video game cover, will sign with the Giants on Wednesday, according to multiple NFL sources.
Hillis, 27, was part of a group of five running backs that worked out for the Giants on Tuesday that included former Giants D.J. Ware and Ryan Torain. But the Giants chose experience over familiarity by going with the 6-2, 250-pound Hillis, who has made 33 starts in his six NFL seasons with four teams.
Peyton Hillis on the cover of Madden NFL 12 – Playstation 3
In one of those stops, Hillis rushed for 1,177 yards and 11 touchdowns with the Cleveland Browns in 2010. That season buoyed him to a win in the fan vote for the player who would appear on the cover of Madden NFL ’12, which came out the following summer.
The mythical “Madden Curse” hit him hard, though, as he engaged in ugly (and failed) negotiations to extend his contract the following summer then suffered a torn hamstring that all but ruined his season. Since his breakout season he’s rushed for just 896 yards with three teams and his career has never been the same.
Mike Stobe/Getty Images
Peyton Hillis’ breakout season leads to the Browns back earning the cover of the Madden video game in 2012 … seen here during the Times Square cover shoot.
The Giants, though, are desperate for help at running back with David Wilson out indefinitely with a herniated disc in his neck and spinal stenosis. The Giants just released running back Da’Rel Scott, who was out anyway with a hamstring injury, and the current starter, Brandon Jacobs, is suffering from a hamstring injury as well.
That left the Giants with only one healthy running back on the roster – rookie Michael Cox, a seventh-round pick out of UMass.
Now they have Hillis, who was briefly with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers this season before being released in September. They also added rookie Jeremy Wright, who was with the Giants during the spring, to their practice squad.
Along with Hillis, Ware, Torain and Wright, the Giants also worked out rookie free agent running back Donald Russell on Tuesday, a source said.
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