Patriots RB Hill makes case to win backup spot

Reports out of New England Patriots camp have Jeremy Hill and Mike Gillislee battling for one final roster spot in the backfield.

In Thursday night's preseason win over the Washington Redskins, it was Hill who took the reins on winning that job behind Rex Burkhead, James White and rookie Sony Michel.

With Burkhead sitting out, and Michel nursing a knee injury, Hill and Gillislee got to put their competition on center stage.

Hill looked more impressive Thursday night, jumpstarting a limp, Tom Brady-less offense with two 10-plus yard runs. The veteran finished with 11 carries for 51 yards (a 4.6 average) and one TD plunge. Gillislee, meanwhile slugged his way for 43 yards on 14 totes (3.1) average.

"I'm just doing my job," Hill said, via NESN. "Just going out there, competing and trying to do my job and just continuing to work. Hopefully, that'll put me in the position I need to be in when the regular season comes around."

Hill touched the ball seven times as the catalyst of the Patriots' first touchdown of the game -- a 19-play 84-yard drive. He added two catches for 12 yards on the night, including a 12-yard catch-and-scamper on a 3rd-and-8 on the TD drive.

Hill and Gillislee are battling to take on the 'big back' role in the Pats' offense.

"I'm trying to just continue to build and build, and hopefully I can get a prominent role on offense," Hill said. "But if that's not the case, then whatever the coaches have for me, that'll be good for me. I just want to make the team and continue to try to help this team win."

Undrafted free agent running Ralph Webb scored twice in mop-up duty and ran for 46 yards on 14 carries (3.3 average). Webb, however, is likely playing for a practice squad spot. The real battle Thursday night was between Hill and Gillislee.

It appears Hill took this round convincingly.