Browns running back Peyton Hillis resisted blaming his 2011 season on the Madden Curse, but he has finally relented. After all the drama triggered by his battle with Cleveland management over a new contract, his controversial decision to sit out a game with strep throat on the advice of his agent, the nagging hamstring injury that caused him to miss five straight games, his awkward rapport with teammates and his perhaps too-little-too-late flourish to end the season, Hillis now thinks he may have been jinxed. "Things didn't work in my favor this year," Hillis said. "There's a few things that happened this year that made me believe in curses. Ain't no doubt about it." Following a breakout year with the Browns, he won a nationwide fan vote to be the cover figure for "Madden NFL 12," the best-selling video game that has earned a reputation for dooming any player who graces its cover. Hillis is the latest to succumb to its spell.