Bengals' Jeremy Hill: Leonard Fournette is top player in CFB

Cincinnati Bengals running back Jeremy Hill, a former rusher for LSU, believes the current star in the Tigers' backfield, Leonard Fournette, deserves top billing among college football's best players.

"I think he's the best player. (He's not only the best) running back but the best player in college football," Hill said during a Thursday interview on The Paul Finebaum Show. "Just how dynamic he is. You could be on the one-yard line. He's a threat to score a touchdown. He's just such a great player. He's so physical. He's so fast. He's just a pleasure to watch. I just love watching him play."

That's high praise, but it's also debatable. Returning Heisman Trophy finalists Deshaun Watson of Clemson and Christian McCaffrey of Stanford could make strong arguments, as well. NFL Media analyst Chad Reuter ranks Fournette the nation's No. 2 player behind Watson. Fournette was considered the Heisman favorite early last season after compiling three consecutive 200-yard games, but fell out of contention in November.

NFL Media senior analyst Gil Brandt said in September that Fournette could have been the No. 1 player selected in the 2016 draft (Fournette won't be draft-eligible until 2017 at the earliest). Other praise for Fournette takes some unique forms. An NFL personnel man likened Fournette to NBA star LeBron James, per NFL Media analyst Daniel Jeremiah, after Fournette dismantled Texas Tech in the Texas Bowl.

Hill left LSU as an underclassman following the 2013 season, in which he rushed for 1,401 yards only 203 carries with 18 touchdowns. A year later, Fournette arrived, along with the hype of being the nation's top-rated high school rusher, and responded with a 1,000-yard season of his own.

*Follow Chase Goodbread on Twitter **@ChaseGoodbread*.

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