Former NFL running back in ICU after saving his kids from drowning

A former NFL player is reportedly in critical condition after rescuing his children from drowning in the Gulf of Mexico.

That’s according to Sidelines Arkansas, a University of Arkansas fan outlet, which called for prayers for running back Peyton Hillis in a tweet Thursday, saying the former Razorback player saved his children.

“Former Arkansas and NFL RB Peyton Hillis is rumored to be in critical condition after saving his children from drowning in the ocean,” the tweet read. “His kids are reportedly safe and healthy, but Peyton could use thoughts & prayers!

Peyton’s uncle, Greg Hillis, said his nephew was “doing better” in a Facebook post, but was still having some serious problems.

“I just wanted to let everyone know on Razorback Nation that Peyton is doing better,” the uncle said. “He’s still in intensive care and having some problems with his kidneys and his lungs but doctors say he is improving. I just wanted to head off any rumors that may be started. I’m sure he would want everyone to know that he appreciates all of the prayers being thrown up on his behalf!!!”

KNWA FOX24 anchor Alyssa Orange reported on more details behind the incident:

“I have confirmed Hillis was in a swimming accident in Pensacola, FL and helicoptered to the hospital. He remains unconscious in the ICU,” Orange tweeted. “Family asks to please pray for him and a speedy recovery.”

The younger Hillis was a seven-year NFL veteran. He was drafted in the seventh round by the Denver Broncos in 2008 and spent two years there. He moved on to Cleveland in 2010, where he had a stellar year, rushing for 1,177 yards on 270 carries and scoring 11 touchdowns — an effort that was rewarded with being named the cover athlete of Madden NFL 12. Hillis played in Kansas City in 2012, before moving to the New York Giants for his final two seasons in the NFL.

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