If a corner is asked to go head to head with the best receiver every week, he has to have the mind set, competitive edge, and guts to do it. Holton Hill has all of it. He looks forward to the challenge each and every week. He has an infectious level of confidence that will radiate through the entire defense. He also has no fear when it comes to lowering his shoulder and throwing his body around in the run game. He feeds off of delivering a big hit and has the toughness to do so consistently.
There are two main aspects of being a lockdown corner. The mental side and the physical side; Hill possess both. He is a big corner with great technique. He has the physicality to play press coverage, and the finesse to play off a few yards. Hill shows great ball skills, and he can smell the endzone like a bloodhound when he gets his hands on the ball. It is obvious he has the ability to be a true x-factor.
I truly believe Hill would be one of the top corner prospects if he didn’t get suspended. A suspension for violating team rules immediately puts a red flag on the player’s character. He will have to prove that he is a team player which is not the easiest thing to do in an interview. A perfect example of a player with a mark on their character and what can happen regardless of how talented and productive they are is Marcus Peters. We all know the story, the Chiefs gave him away for practically nothing because 31 teams did not want him in their locker room. Ironically, he is one of the top corners in the NFL. If Hill can not change his selfish ways, there will be plenty of suspensions and moving in his future.
How He Fits
It is clear the defense will be playing with a different mentality this coming season, but they need the players to do so. Mike Pettine, Mike Daniels, and David Bakhtiari have all advocated for certain types of players so far this offseason. Holton Hill fits the mold, and he has the same “dawg mentality” they are looking for. He will bring that style and confidence to the secondary which is much needed. He has the size and ability to be put on an island and thrive. This will allow Pettine and Whitt to be more creative in coverage schemes. He can be a game changer without making a single play on the highlight real; although, he will take advantage of the opportunity if it provides itself. Hill does come with a risk reward, but the reward far outweighs the risk if he falls far enough in the draft.
3rd – 4th