From now until the 2023 NFL Draft, we will scout and create profiles for as many prospects as possible, examining their strengths, weaknesses, and what they can bring to an NFL franchise. These players could be potential top-10 picks, all the way down to Day 3 selections and priority undrafted free agents. Today, I’ll be profiling Pittsburgh safety Brandon Hill.
#3 Brandon Hill/S Pittsburgh – 5103, 193 lbs. (Senior)
|Player||Ht/Wt||Hand Size||Arm Length||Wingspan|
|Brandon Hill||5103, 193||9 1/2||30 3/4||N/A|
|40-Yard Dash||10-Yard Dash||Short Shuttle||3-Cone|
|Broad Jump||Vertical||Bench Press|
— Plays fearlessly and flies to the ball, throws weight around and wants to hit, willing to come down and fill the alley
— Can come off the hash and defend sideline throws in Cover 2
— Enough hit power to force fumbles
— Shows explosiveness out of his pedal to transition and come downhill
— Asked to move around defense, experience blitzing and aligning in the box
— Plays with good motor overall
— Adequate starting experience
— Has makeup to create impact on special teams
— Tested with plus speed and overall a solid workout and 8.52 RAS Score
— Slight and small frame, highly undersized for the position
— Goes for kill shot and misses too often, won’t always wrap up
— Can come to balance too early as a tackler when he doesn’t go for big hit, causing him to allow too much space and miss
— Needs to improve his angles in run game
— Overly aggressive player too easily moved in zone and fooled by QB eyes and pump fakes
— Limited impact plays in coverage
— Not an effective blitzer
— Doesn’t have much experience as post safety
— Tape goes quiet too often
— Turns 24 in September
— 25 career starts for Panthers
— Career: 162 tackles (1.5 TFL) 3 INTs, 3 FFs
— 2022: 67 tackles (0.5 TFL) 0 INTs 0 INTs
— Three-star recruit from Apopka, Florida, chose Pitt over Boston College, Missouri, Toledo and several others
— Had five INTs senior year of high school, also played RB and scored six touchdowns
— Attended Miami (FL) Junior Day but Hurricanes never made offer despite head coach making several stops to his HS for other recruits
— Participated in track and field in HS, participated in 100 meters and long jump
Brandon Hill is a local Pitt product, one of several in this year’s NFL Draft, so he’s worth watching and writing about based on that pretty much alone. He’s a pretty easy guy to pick up on in clips. Hill flies around and wants to sacrifice his body to make a hit. He chases after the ball with a good motor and desire to finish. In the second clip below, however, you can see him attack and go for the big stick with a shoulder but miss the tackle.
Here’s a couple other examples.
His tape often left me wanting more. While Hill goes for a lot of big hits, he can whiff too and he wasn’t a steady tackler due to his small and slight frame and lack of length. At the same time, I noticed on tape he’d also come to balance too early and should’ve been more aggressive, allowing receivers the chance to make a move and get past him.
In coverage, he made limited plays and was too easily moved around and beat in coverage. Overly aggressive and out of position, he allowed or could’ve allowed big plays, like in the recovery and breakup here against Clemson. He’s beat and a better throw is a touchdown, not an incompletion.
Or getting his eyes stuck here and nearly giving up the touchdown.
Hill plays with good energy and flashes some explosiveness and finish, but his frame makes him far too inconsistent while he doesn’t offer much in coverage aside from some basic deep half responsibilities. His traits translate to playing on special teams and he could make a mark there but his ceiling beyond that is limited to nothing more than a reserve. My NFL comp is Nat Berhe.
Projection: Mid-Late Day Three
Depot Draft Scale: 6.0 – Undrafted Free Agent
Games Watched: vs Clemson (2021), vs Tennessee (2022), vs West Virginia (2022)