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Jeremy Hill, RB (NEP)

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Seems to be a consensus top 5 RB (#3 on Mayock's board) but I didn't see a thread. Thought it was worth getting the discussion started.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4_67w8sjuo8

Dying to see where he gets drafted. His comps all went ~180-220, including one who was considered a 2nd or 3rd round prospect (Jonathan Dwyer). Think it's possible Hill falls a long way.

Edited by wdcrob

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Rotoworld:

LSU RB Jeremy Hill possesses "deceptive quickness and agility for a 230-pound back," according to NFL Films' Greg Cosell.

Having declared for the draft after his redshirt sophomore season, Hill is one of the draft's youngest RBs. "I thought he was excellent at getting through small cracks at the point of attack, and that is an absolutely necessary trait in the NFL," Cosell said. The analyst also likes that Hill mostly ran out of NFL formations with the Tigers. The 6-foot-2, 235-pound Hill has garnered comparisons to LaGarrette Blount.
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Tricky player. I knew he wasn't going to test well at the combine, but he didn't just underwhelm. He bombed.

There's a disparity between what he looks like as an athlete on paper and what subjective evaluators think about him. Most people like him on the field. I think he runs a little upright and doesn't have tremendous explosiveness, but he plays faster than his listed 40 time and he has a little bit of wiggle. Especially when picking his way through traffic near the LOS. Nimble feet. As mentioned, he catches the ball well. He has a big frame with good power. I think he looks pretty good "on tape" but...

How much of his success was the OL and the system? Is he really that good or did he just benefit from playing on a stacked team? Is he the type of guy who can dominate in college because he's big with decent mobility, but will be exposed in the NFL where everyone is a great athlete? Like a Ron Dayne, LenDale White, or Antowain Smith? I think he has a little bit of that feel to him.

Ultimately, I'll probably rank him wherever his draft slot and opportunity dictate. I'm not sky high on his ability in a vacuum. At the same time, if he's drafted in rounds 2-4 to a team with an open RB spot, there's no reason why he can't make some kind of impact for a while. And as we've seen with Bell/Lacy/Stacy, do reasonably well and the FF community will go ape for your value even if you aren't necessarily that good. That's the appeal of both Hill and Hyde for me. They aren't guys that I like independent of situation, but in the right situation they can have value.

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Tricky player. I knew he wasn't going to test well at the combine, but he didn't just underwhelm. He bombed.

There's a disparity between what he looks like as an athlete on paper and what subjective evaluators think about him. Most people like him on the field. I think he runs a little upright and doesn't have tremendous explosiveness, but he plays faster than his listed 40 time and he has a little bit of wiggle. Especially when picking his way through traffic near the LOS. Nimble feet. As mentioned, he catches the ball well. He has a big frame with good power. I think he looks pretty good "on tape" but...

How much of his success was the OL and the system? Is he really that good or did he just benefit from playing on a stacked team? Is he the type of guy who can dominate in college because he's big with decent mobility, but will be exposed in the NFL where everyone is a great athlete? Like a Ron Dayne, LenDale White, or Antowain Smith? I think he has a little bit of that feel to him.

Ultimately, I'll probably rank him wherever his draft slot and opportunity dictate. I'm not sky high on his ability in a vacuum. At the same time, if he's drafted in rounds 2-4 to a team with an open RB spot, there's no reason why he can't make some kind of impact for a while. And as we've seen with Bell/Lacy/Stacy, do reasonably well and the FF community will go ape for your value even if you aren't necessarily that good. That's the appeal of both Hill and Hyde for me. They aren't guys that I like independent of situation, but in the right situation they can have value.

Me too to all that. Good posting.

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Tricky player. I knew he wasn't going to test well at the combine, but he didn't just underwhelm. He bombed.

There's a disparity between what he looks like as an athlete on paper and what subjective evaluators think about him. Most people like him on the field. I think he runs a little upright and doesn't have tremendous explosiveness, but he plays faster than his listed 40 time and he has a little bit of wiggle. Especially when picking his way through traffic near the LOS. Nimble feet. As mentioned, he catches the ball well. He has a big frame with good power. I think he looks pretty good "on tape" but...

How much of his success was the OL and the system? Is he really that good or did he just benefit from playing on a stacked team? Is he the type of guy who can dominate in college because he's big with decent mobility, but will be exposed in the NFL where everyone is a great athlete? Like a Ron Dayne, LenDale White, or Antowain Smith? I think he has a little bit of that feel to him.

Ultimately, I'll probably rank him wherever his draft slot and opportunity dictate. I'm not sky high on his ability in a vacuum. At the same time, if he's drafted in rounds 2-4 to a team with an open RB spot, there's no reason why he can't make some kind of impact for a while. And as we've seen with Bell/Lacy/Stacy, do reasonably well and the FF community will go ape for your value even if you aren't necessarily that good. That's the appeal of both Hill and Hyde for me. They aren't guys that I like independent of situation, but in the right situation they can have value.

Regarding the bolded above, I think this is a very accurate assessment of Hill: he looks a lot better on tape than his combine numbers suggest, and I wasn't very surprised to see him test poorly. I think a lot of people are underestimating his vision and, as you write, his footwork picking through trash at the line of scrimmage. I think he's exceptionally good in that area. He's very reliable in the sense that he isn't going to get you a lot of negative plays, and he'll almost always see openings. Per Peshek's RB metrics article:

- Coming in just behind Hyde in the rankings is Jeremy Hill. Breaking tackles on 8.59% of his carries, he leads the entire class in the amount of broken tackles. In addition, he also posted a strong 2.93 yards after contact. It seems obvious to expect the big RBs to lead these categories, but that’s not always the case; Gio Bernard and Johnathan Franklin were leaders in this category in the 2012 draft class. High rankings for Hyde and Hill are just testaments to how hard they run.

http://www.rotoworld.com/articles/cfb/46396/349/peshek-rb-metrics-10

As a bonus he'll occasionally break long runs.

As for the question about Hill benefiting from a stacked LSU squad, it's really tough to say. This season, sure, it probably helped. Cam Cameron coming on board gave us our first decent offense in quite a while and Mettenberger, Beckham, Jr. and Landry all thrived so there was good support from the passing game. IN 2013 Hill almost doubled his yardage production from 2012 (142 attempts, 755 yards, 12 TDs) with more carries: 203-1401-16. Our offensive line in 2013 was just OK depending on the metrics, and we had a lot of reshuffling around injuries and draft departures during Hill's two years. In 2013 we had the 32nd-ranked offense in the nation (42nd in passing, 30th in rushing), rankings we would have killed for prior to Cameron. In 2012 we absolutely sucked on offense, and the rankings (like Hill's metrics) don't sufficiently capture the reality: 77th overall, 46th in rushing, 90th in passing. Our passing game wasn't anything close to legitimate until late in the 2012 season (when Mettenberger provided a preview of 2013 against Alabama). So, 2012 is tough to read for Hill: we were horrible on offense and he wasn't the feature RB in the way he was in 2013.

I don't think Hill is any kind of bulletproof RB talent, which is obviously a big part of whether to invest a first round dynasty pick. But I think he'll be a reliable performer who coaches will feel comfortable with, and he does bread-and-butter things that translate well to success in the NFL.

Edited by DAG
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Hill is gonna be a great NFL back. He is way more talented than Steven Ridley and Cam Cameron just loved this guy. Cam knows a thing or two about running backs....

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I didn't realize how big he actually was. Was down on him pre-combine, gotta see where he lands. If he doesn't go somewhere that equates to instant production (Atlanta, for example). I'm steering clear.

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I knew he wasn't going to test well at the combine, but he didn't just underwhelm. He bombed.

The performance was about the same as Hyde's, except he was able/willing to run the receiving drills and looked great doing it.

It was also very similar to Carey's, except he did everything at 25 pounds heavier.

His 10 yard splits in the 40 were among the best at his position (which backs up the burst that shows on tape).

None of the power backs lit up the charts, especially in the jumps, but I wouldn't say Hill bombed, especially relative to his competition.

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I knew he wasn't going to test well at the combine, but he didn't just underwhelm. He bombed.

The performance was about the same as Hyde's, except he was able/willing to run the receiving drills and looked great doing it.

It was also very similar to Carey's, except he did everything at 25 pounds heavier.

His 10 yard splits in the 40 were among the best at his position (which backs up the burst that shows on tape).

None of the power backs lit up the charts, especially in the jumps, but I wouldn't say Hill bombed, especially relative to his competition.

When it comes to pure running ability, Carey runs circles around Hill. I'm saying that he's not capable of more but Carey runs with much more technique than Hill who looks for the hole. Admittedly, he had some big holes to run through from the highlights I watched above. He reminds me of Demarco Murray and Darren McFadden, obviously less fast but he's got decent burners.

He's definitely faster than Eddie Lacey for example.

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I knew he wasn't going to test well at the combine, but he didn't just underwhelm. He bombed.

The performance was about the same as Hyde's, except he was able/willing to run the receiving drills and looked great doing it.

It was also very similar to Carey's, except he did everything at 25 pounds heavier.

His 10 yard splits in the 40 were among the best at his position (which backs up the burst that shows on tape).

None of the power backs lit up the charts, especially in the jumps, but I wouldn't say Hill bombed, especially relative to his competition.

When it comes to pure running ability, Carey runs circles around Hill. I'm saying that he's not capable of more but Carey runs with much more technique than Hill who looks for the hole. Admittedly, he had some big holes to run through from the highlights I watched above. He reminds me of Demarco Murray and Darren McFadden, obviously less fast but he's got decent burners.

He's definitely faster than Eddie Lacey for example.

Maybe he's faster, maybe he's better. But if you are talking combine performance, if Hill bombed, Carey bombed much worse. A 4.7 at 209, along with poor jumps isn't going to help ANYONE's stock. In fact, the fact that the perception is that Carey is a lot faster than the other power backs made it worse.

As for real talent and NFL prospects, vision and other non-measurables can take you a long way, so I'm not saying Carey is useless. But I think scouts DO take measurables into consideration. If he had run something closer to 4.5, it would have been a very different discussion. DL Aaron Donald was faster at 285 pounds. ;)

Edited by Holy Schneikes

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He doesn't run with much power fora. Guy his size, the upright style plays a part in that. Consistently anyway. He has splash plays, but goes down too easily frequently. He doesn't have a skill set that says passing downs rb either. I have the option to keep him from my college taxi and probably will, but it would take a special situation for me to target him in my other.

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Cam Cameron, the offensive coordinator at LSU this year, recently told Gil Brandt that he believes Hill is one of the best running backs he's been around, from the standpoint of power, the ability to catch the ball, etc. When a guy like Cameron, who's been in the NFL as a head coach and offensive coordinator, speaks of a player that highly, you've got to take notice.

Edited by OrangeJulius

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Cam Cameron, the offensive coordinator at LSU this year, recently told me Gil Brandt that he believes Hill is one of the best running backs he's been around, from the standpoint of power, the ability to catch the ball, etc. When a guy like Cameron, who's been in the NFL as a head coach and offensive coordinator, speaks of a player that highly, you've got to take notice.

I keep thinking the Saints have a placeholder for Hill. He can catch and run and played in Cam's pro style offense, I loved watching him run and it always seemed like he never got enough chances because of the Tigers' crowded backfield. Everyone in NO would probably be pretty damn excited about the forthcoming season thinking about Pierre, Khiry, Ingram and Hill all in the same backfield, wow. Of course that would recalibrate the FF value of NO RBs yet again but hey it would be fun to watch. Hopefully he's there in the end of the 3rd, but I doubt it - yet I'm not sure who would jump to the 2nd to get him either. If the Saints really want him they would have to use that late 2nd I believe.

Edited by SaintsInDome2006

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Cam Cameron, the offensive coordinator at LSU this year, recently told me Gil Brandt that he believes Hill is one of the best running backs he's been around, from the standpoint of power, the ability to catch the ball, etc. When a guy like Cameron, who's been in the NFL as a head coach and offensive coordinator, speaks of a player that highly, you've got to take notice.

I keep thinking the Saints have a placeholder for Hill. He can catch and run and played in Cam's pro style offense, I loved watching him run and it always seemed like he never got enough chances because of the Tigers' crowded backfield. Everyone in NO would probably be pretty damn excited about the forthcoming season thinking about Pierre, Khiry, Ingram and Hill all in the same backfield, wow. Of course that would recalibrate the FF value of NO RBs yet again but hey it would be fun to watch. Hopefully he's there in the end of the 3rd, but I doubt it - yet I'm not sure who would jump to the 2nd to get him either. If the Saints really want him they would have to use that late 2nd I believe.

Hill can catch?

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Cam Cameron, the offensive coordinator at LSU this year, recently told me Gil Brandt that he believes Hill is one of the best running backs he's been around, from the standpoint of power, the ability to catch the ball, etc. When a guy like Cameron, who's been in the NFL as a head coach and offensive coordinator, speaks of a player that highly, you've got to take notice.

I keep thinking the Saints have a placeholder for Hill. He can catch and run and played in Cam's pro style offense, I loved watching him run and it always seemed like he never got enough chances because of the Tigers' crowded backfield. Everyone in NO would probably be pretty damn excited about the forthcoming season thinking about Pierre, Khiry, Ingram and Hill all in the same backfield, wow. Of course that would recalibrate the FF value of NO RBs yet again but hey it would be fun to watch. Hopefully he's there in the end of the 3rd, but I doubt it - yet I'm not sure who would jump to the 2nd to get him either. If the Saints really want him they would have to use that late 2nd I believe.

Hill can catch?

Yes - and he looks good doing it as well.

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I am surprised they didn't utilize him more, non factor in passing game in most games I watched. Stats mostly support that too. That's Les Miles for ya

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Hey Mac Hill has great hands. Looks very natural catching the ball. Hands catcher and turns up field quickly.

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Rotoworld:

LSU RB Jeremy Hill visited the Bills this week.

Hill is an upright runner who breaks tackles once picking up speed. Teams will have questions about his checkered past off the field, but it is difficult to know how much that will impact his evaluation. He should, at best, be a third-round pick.

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I think Hill is going to be a very good NFL RB... He is a part of my top 4 RBs and I am having a tough time differentiating between the four....

Currently I have:

Sankey

Mason

Hill

Hyde.....

Hill just looks like an NFL RB.... I know his combine was not great, but that film jumps at me....

Edited by Brewtown

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I think Hill is going to be a very good NFL RB... He is a part of my top 4 RBs and I am having a tough tim differentiating between the four....

Currently I have:

Sankey

Mason

Hill

Hyde.....

Hill just looks like an NFL RB.... I know his combine was not great, but that film jumps at me....

He's a big, strong back that was able to power through people. I don't think he'll be able to break long gains very often like he did in college. He has a role in the NFL but I don't see him as an every down back. He feels like Shonn Greene with better hands.

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4.52 and 4.54 40's today at Pro Day. I agree with EBF (whoops) that Landry and Hill's time variance from Indy is puzzling and needs to be examined.

But he rarely got caught from behind against SEC competition.

Coach speak (at Pro Day no less) but Cam Cameron - Jeremy Hill "is an every down back" and compared "his smarts on field to LaDainian Tomlinson".

Edited by lsutigers

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4.52 and 4.54 40's today at Pro Day. I agree with Faust that Landry and Hill's time variance from Indy is puzzling and needs to be examined.

But he rarely got caught from behind against SEC competition.

Coach speak (at Pro Day no less) but Cam Cameron - Jeremy Hill "is an every down back" and compared "his smarts on field to LaDainian Tomlinson".

It was EBF that actually pointed that out:

Jarvis Landry - 4.58 at pro day on 2 good hammies. Welcome back to Round 2, young man.

With Landry and Hill both improving by over a tenth of a second, it makes me wonder about the timing conditions.

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Are LSU results posted yet? I haven't seen a link. Some guys I'm really curious to see about from today.

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Honest question for a lot of the veteran draftniks in here. Do agility numbers not really matter as much to you for these bigger-type backs? I realize they are more important for smaller backs the size of Sankey, Seastrunk, etc.

Looking at Hill's agility numbers today, he ran a 7.64 three cone and 4.53 short shuttle. Compare that to a back that EBF loves to say is pedestrian, Le'Veon Bell. Bell (at a similar size and speed), ran a 6.75 three cone and 4.24 short shuttle. Thoughts on the importance?

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I really haven't looked in depth at the shuttle drills, but it seems to me like there's only a very limited correlation between three cone time and on-field elusiveness.

Adrian Peterson is mostly known for his speed/power combo, but on the field I'd say he's a very elusive back. He had a fairly pedestrian 7.09 three cone time. Likewise, MJD had a 7.08 even though he's always been a pretty dangerous player in space. On the other hand, last year's UDFA rookie Michael Ford is an absolute terror on paper. Unreal explosiveness and a very fast 6.87 three cone time. On the field, he is a stiff straight-line runner with very limited lateral ability.

This year, I would say Allen Robinson is far more agile and elusive on the field than guys like Donte Moncrief and Mike Evans, even though his three cone time is only marginally better (7.00 compared to 7.02 and 7.08). All three of them had better times than Peterson. Do they cut better and move better in games? Absolutely not.

Without having a lot of historical data for this drill, my sense is that it doesn't mean too much unless the result is skewed really far in either direction. When a player has an extremely low figure (like a 6.6X for a WR or a 6.9X for a TE), I think it's usually a decent indicator that he at least has economical movement skills, if not functional elusiveness (which are not exactly the same thing - Josh Boyce is a clean route runner, but not great with the ball in his hands for example). When a player has a really high figure, I think it might be a sign that he doesn't move very well. Even then, it's not perfect though.

7.64 would be an incredibly slow time for Hill. Taken in conjunction with his 40 time and jumps from the combine, I would say it paints a picture of a guy who has sluggish movement skills and very limited fast-twitch explosiveness. If you want to find comfort, Eddie Lacy had pretty horrendous numbers in all the drills last year and he put together a reasonably good rookie season.

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By the way, I think part of the problem is that the three cone drill is basically a routine. These guys practice it in the build up to the draft, so by the time they actually run it for scouts it should be very familiar to them and they should know exactly what to do to game the drill to get the best time they're capable of.

That doesn't mean it's worthless, but it's a far cry from a lot of what happens on the field. When a WR or RB makes a cut in a game, it's often going to happen in a situation where it wasn't part of any pre-set plan. It's improvisation vs. memorization/routine. You can teach someone to run a triangle around cones, but you really can't teach the ability to react to blockers/tacklers and take decisive actions to capitalize on developing situations.

So maybe the three cone drill says a little bit about movement skills/fluidity (it definitely doesn't say everything), but it says zero about vision.

Overall, I'd say one of the failures of the combine is that there's no reliable way to quantify elusiveness and that's why a lot of the players who have this as their hallmark trait (i.e. Anquan Boldin/Keenan Allen/Rueben Randle/LeSean McCoy) can look somewhat lackluster on paper depending on what you emphasize.

Edited by EBF
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Honest question for a lot of the veteran draftniks in here. Do agility numbers not really matter as much to you for these bigger-type backs? I realize they are more important for smaller backs the size of Sankey, Seastrunk, etc.

Looking at Hill's agility numbers today, he ran a 7.64 three cone and 4.53 short shuttle. Compare that to a back that EBF loves to say is pedestrian, Le'Veon Bell. Bell (at a similar size and speed), ran a 6.75 three cone and 4.24 short shuttle. Thoughts on the importance?

If a RB is very good at creating yards after contact, I generally don't care about workout numbers.

See: Michael Turner, Brandon Jacobs,

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Cam Cameron, the offensive coordinator at LSU this year, recently told Gil Brandt that he believes Hill is one of the best running backs he's been around, from the standpoint of power, the ability to catch the ball, etc. When a guy like Cameron, who's been in the NFL as a head coach and offensive coordinator, speaks of a player that highly, you've got to take notice.

Nice day for Hill. I believe in this guy.

He is going to be a steal for somebody.

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Rotoworld:

NFL Network's Daniel Jeremiah tweeted most of the teams he talks to prefer LSU RB Jeremy Hill over Ohio State's Carlos Hyde.

We are extremely surprised to hear this, as Hyde has consistently been mentioned as the top running back. Hill does have a higher tackle breaking percentage, but both runners excel at picking up yards after contact. Hyde did take a large step forward this year.

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Zach Mettenberger throws; Craig Loston cuts hair, looks fast

Gil Brandt

Excerpt:

Jeremy Hill, RB (6-0 3/4, 234) — Hill ran the 40 in 4.53 seconds on both attempts. He had a 31-inch vertical jump and did the short shuttle in 4.59 seconds. He is described as being a smart player with an ability to play all downs. He is another LSU running back who also has soft hands catching the ball. At LSU’s pro day, he worked out as both a running back and flanked out wide with the ball being thrown to him as if he were a wide receiver. This is a player who has a chance to be the first running back selected in the draft.

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Jeremy Hill, 6'1'', 235. Vs Iowa

1st 10. 42 yards on power toss. Shows some patience cor play to develop

1st 10. 2 yards, shows more patience, toss left, nothing there

3rd 1. Finds crease against 8 man box for 6 yard gain

1st 5.power toss right, 15 yards

1st and G. Dive, stacked line and stopped

TD on qb keeper.

8 play drive, Hill ran 5 of them, 64 yards

1st 10. Cutback for 5 yards

2nd 5...impeded by pulling guard on trap, no gain

3rd. Not in, blue replaces (3rd down back)

1ST 10. tripped up, trash in backfield

2nd 10. Slips on turf on pass route out of backfield

3rd 10. Not in

Next series, out, rests

1st 10, 3 yards up middle

2nd 7. Quick pitch, good patience, good feet setup developing play

3rd 3. Outbreather

Punt

Next series, out for breather, comes in on 3rd and 2

Back in against 10 in the box, dive up the middle, stands DT straight up at los, and fights for 1st down. Tremendous leg drive

1st 10. Touchdown, Hill on 15 yard run, 10 in the box, allows blocks to develop and drags defender from 5 yard line, spinning off him for the td.

Next series

1st 10. Screws up blitz pick up

3rd 4. Trash at los, ability to toss defender away with free hand and fall forward for first

1st 10. Swing pass, catches ball fine, good form

2nd 8. Sweep, no blocking, strings out blockers, and plants to find crease for 2 yards with no blocking

3rd 6. Great blitz pick up, iniates blitz pick up, and maintains block

1st 10 off tackle, 2 yards

2nd 8, 28 yard gain on nice cutback, showing good vision

1st 10, 3rd carry in a row, up gut, dive, minimal gain

2 plays out, back in

3rd 6, delay sweep, 8 in box, 38 yards. Patient, lets play develop, finds crease, plants and shows nice burst on 4th quarter run, fights for extra yards with solid stiff arm and running angry

A few things watching this game. It was the most vanilla of ffense with mettenberger out. Frosh qb, jefferson very erratic. Simple offense of toss right and left, and Iowa stacked the box on numerous occasions. 8, 9, sometimes 10 in the box, and everyone knew where the ball was going, yet, Hill was able to create often where there was no play noreasy yards.

For a 235 lb guy, Hill...

Has exceptionally quick feet

Moves well for a bigger rb

Workhorse, 20 carry guy. Great stamina, strong in the 4th qtr.

Nice vision on tosses eluding second level

Picks feet up well thru los and avoiding trash

Strong. Drags tacklers from behind, arm tackles will not cut it, runs through em.

Keeps legs churning on contact, strong as s hips.

Runs angry, but also patient, has a good forward lean. Not afraid to iniate contact but has subtle moves to avoid contact as well.

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Cover 3: Jeremy Hill

APRIL 19, 2014 http://www.nationalfootballpost.com/Cover-3-Jeremy-Hill.html

This past February, our latest "Introduction to Scouting" class was taught by Greg Gabriel. Over the next few weeks, we'll be featuring the best scouting reports from the graduates. If you would like to join the next session, it begins May 19th, and runs for six weeks. You'll learn a high level of scouting knowledge from one of the most seasoned vets of the industry, Greg Gabriel, whose scouting career spanned 29 seasons. Register at nfpscout.com.

Today, the class takes on LSU running back Jeremy Hill.

Darin Ackerman, sidelionreport.com

STRENGTHS: Powerful build with prototypical height and weight. Physical running style – lowers shoulder to power through defenders and keeps legs churning to consistently pick up tough YAC. Possesses excellent
balance – bounces off defenders/arm tackles to stay on his feet and rarely goes down on initial contact. Effective inside one-cut runner – good burst to and through the hole, gets downhill quickly and can pick
and slide his way through traffic.

Reliable dump-off/screen option in the passing game. Protects the ball well (one fumble, 371 career touches). Flashes the ability to be a solid face-up blocker in pass pro; can drop his base and anchor. Still has a lot of tread on his tires. Competitive.

WEAKNESSES: Lacks upper echelon speed or second gear to separate from second level defenders and take it the distance. Is a bit tight in the hips and struggles stringing together moves to make defenders miss in space. Doesn’t showcase the ability to create when the hole closes. Needs to show more patience when working off blocks. Generally runs behind his pads, but could be more consistent. Not sudden enough to be an effective route runner in the passing game. Effort in pass protection needs to be more consistent. Has character concerns.

SUMMATION: Hill, who sat out 2011 due to legal issues, is coming off a productive sophomore season where he finished with 1401 rushing yards (6.9 ypc average) and 16 touchdowns, second most in school history. A big, thickly built back who runs angry, Hill is most effective between the tackles. He showcases nice burst to and through the hole with quick enough feet to slip through creases and pick and slide his way through traffic. However, he doesn’t have the speed and elusiveness to be a home-run threat once he gets to the second level.

In the passing game, he has reliable enough hands to be a check-down option, but isn’t sudden enough to run the route tree. His receiving skills and upside as a pass protector, however, are adequate to be a three-down player. Overall, his competitiveness, exceptional contact balance and consistent ability to pick up tough YAC project him as a potential starter in a ball control, power-based offense. However, his character issues raise red flags and warrant a thorough background investigation.

Grade: 6.5

John Boyum, @JohnnyDarkCloud

STRENGTHS: Is strong runner who can lower his pads and push the pile. Hits the hole fairly quickly and shows balance in traffic, breaking arm tackles and finishes runs by consistently falling forward while consciously securing the ball. Best when running between the tackles. Competitiveness and toughness evident vs. both Mississippi State and South Carolina by taking on and violently running at and through defensive backs downfield. Also showed desire and determination vs. South Carolina by pushing the pile on short TD.

A willing pass blocker who will step into the hole and take on LB's and DE's alike. Will miss a read (vs. Florida) and will, at times, dive at rushers vs. walling them off. Shows soft hands, but strictly as a check down, screen or swing receiver. Football smarts was visible on more than one occasion, two examples occurred vs. Florida: 1) effectively and aggressively cut block a free rushing DE on a designed short pass play to prevent a batted ball 2) intentionally stayed in bounds to keep the clock running

WEAKNESSES: Lacks top line speed and is not a home run hitter, although capable of long gainers as evidenced by his 50 yard TD vs. South Carolina. Lacks consistent vision, missing some holes and cut back opportunities (vs. Florida). Will run high into the hole at times and get stood up for little to no gain. Lacks elite athleticism to make jump cuts or sharp bursting cuts, rarely makes more than one move on any given play. Average agility and quickness, getting what's there but not often times more. Not a dangerous threat on the outside, but can make the corner.

SUMMATION: Good sized, thickly built running back that can be an effective between the tackles runner, capable of goal line carries. Strong enough, while showing the necessary desire, to pass block. Soft enough hands to remain an option on third down. Lacks elite athleticism to excel at any one area, but not deficient enough at any one to be a liability.

Grade: 6.2

David Rantisi, @wkeupitsfootbal, wakeupitsfootball.com

Strengths: Possesses a large frame in upper body and has above average girth in lower half of body... Can break tackles after initial contact which result in extra yards and is not afraid to lower his shoulder at the end of his runs... He tends to also show good balance by getting low and maintaining his center of gravity when running between the tackles and tends to fall forward at the end of runs... His legs are always moving and if defenders do not wrap up the lower half of his body, he will continue to move the pile... Very physical in his running style and is not afraid to punish opposing defenders... can showcase some instinctive cutback ability as well.

Weaknesses: Can lose concentration or patience on certain plays that will result in a loss or no gain... His field vision can be inconsistent at times where he can either see a lane and break a run for 20+ yards or hesitate with a result of a short loss on the play... May not showcase elite speed at the position that allows him to separate from opposing cornerbacks and safeties... Pass protection could see some improvement when planting his feet and preparing for contact.

Overall Impression: A big running back who can potentially play all 3-downs in the NFL. Has a physical element to his running style that allows him to pick up extra yards on nearly every play.

Grade: 6.8

Edited by Biabreakable

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Rotoworld:

NFL.com's Ian Rapoport reports that LSU RB Jeremy Hill visited the Cincinnati Bengals on Monday.

"LSU RB Jeremy Hill is in Cincy today visiting with Bengals. Has visited with Bills, Titans & Jaguars. He has one more visit this week," Rapoport tweeted. The previous mentioned teams would easily welcome Hill's punishing downhill running style to their rushing attack. Hill has generated some buzz as of late, and is battling Ohio State's Carlos Hyde to have his name called first, amongst this year's crop of running backs. The 6-foot-2, 235-pound Hill has drawn comparisons to LaGarrette Blount.
Apr 21 - 3:34 PM

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Love Hill's hands. He looks very natural catching the football. I kind of remember Hill breaking some long runs in college. He probably plays faster than 4.6.......

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By the way, I think part of the problem is that the three cone drill is basically a routine. These guys practice it in the build up to the draft, so by the time they actually run it for scouts it should be very familiar to them and they should know exactly what to do to game the drill to get the best time they're capable of.

That doesn't mean it's worthless, but it's a far cry from a lot of what happens on the field. When a WR or RB makes a cut in a game, it's often going to happen in a situation where it wasn't part of any pre-set plan. It's improvisation vs. memorization/routine. You can teach someone to run a triangle around cones, but you really can't teach the ability to react to blockers/tacklers and take decisive actions to capitalize on developing situations.

So maybe the three cone drill says a little bit about movement skills/fluidity (it definitely doesn't say everything), but it says zero about vision.

Overall, I'd say one of the failures of the combine is that there's no reliable way to quantify elusiveness and that's why a lot of the players who have this as their hallmark trait (i.e. Anquan Boldin/Keenan Allen/Rueben Randle/LeSean McCoy) can look somewhat lackluster on paper depending on what you emphasize.

One of the things about the drill for RBs is that to be good at the 3 cone you need to get low, so it is somewhat related to a players ability to change direction while maintaining low pad level.

Not saying the measurement (or any of them) is gospel by any means. But one of the things about it that I think is related to RB ability.

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Rotoworld:

LSU RB Jeremy Hill finished only three points behind Carlos Hyde for top RB prospect honors in the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel's poll of 18 NFL scouts.

"That big (expletive) is faster and a better athlete than Hyde, and he catches the (expletive) out of it," a scout said. "Damn right I like him as a starter." Hyde earned nine first-place votes and 72 points, while Hill finished with 69 points and seven first-place votes. Bishop Sankey (43) and Tre Mason (35) finished third and fourth respectively, each garnering one first-place vote. Andre Williams (13), Terrance West (11) and Devonte Freeman (10) rounded out the top eight. "He's a complete back," another scout said of Hill. "He can be an every-down player and carry the load. He's really good in the passing game, too. Smooth runner. Natural run instincts."

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