2018 Raiders Draft Prospect Profile
Name: Holton Hill
Weight: 199 pounds
Although Hill does not possess deep speed, he keeps hip-to-hip proximity with receivers. When Hill runs vertically, his strides lengthen. As a result, he accelerates, but does not blow by any receiver. To his credit, Hill read the opposing receiver’s hips as a way of anticipating longer routes.
By nature, Hill loves the press coverage and bump-and-run style. At the line of scrimmage, Hill keeps his shoulders square and hands inside to jam receivers. In addition, Hill’s length and body control helps with shorter routes. By shutting down any inside release, Hill controls a part of the route, forcing the wideout to adjust to him. Hill does not open the gate (turning hips to allow a path).
When Hill breaks on the ball, he immediately recognizes the location of the ball and angle to take. Similarly, on quick slants and outs, Hill will jump those immediately. Despite not owning tremendous speed, Hill’s quickness will halt underneath and intermediate routes.
During his tenure in Austin, Hill only deflected eight passes and snared three interceptions. On the positive side, each of those picks went for score. At the next level, Hill should gamble a little less. When he does deflect the ball away from his body, Hill has shown a tendency of just reaching across the wideout. As a result, if he misses the play, that position puts him at an awful pursuit angle.
Unlike most corners, Hill thrives in the open field and in run support. While playing corner, Hill finishes like a safety. On the perimeter, singled up, Hill breaks down well and drives his hips through the target while wrapping up. Not to mention, Hill zips through screen, discarding blockers to locate the ball.
In the Guenther/Zimmer defense, the corners should see many zone looks. The Raiders will rely on their corners to make patrol their zones, making sure tackles. If left to his area, Hill can effectively cover and make sound tackling decisions. His length and agility would help the Raiders without question.
Nevertheless, Hill’s checkered discipline history could see his draft stock fall. At Texas, the coaching staff suspended after the November 4th game at TCU. While no arrest of note occurred, Hill did remain with the team. If his issue is a personality conflict with the coaching staff, the Raiders can work with that. Since law enforcement did not intervene, Hill remains a viable Day 2 draft option for Oakland.