Holton Hill scouting report: Tall, physical cornerback

Holton Hill at the Houston NFTC - Student Sports

The cornerback was part of a talented Lamar secondary in 2013.

Houston (Texas) Lamar cornerback Holton Hill is one of the top defensive backs in the state of Texas.

Ranked as a consensus four-star prospect, the 6'2, 184-pounder is the No. 20 cornerback nationally, the No. 26 player in the state of Texas, and the No. 176 player in the country.

With offers from Alabama, Arkansas, Baylor, California, Colorado, Florida State, Houston, LSU, Maryland, Michigan State, Nebraska, Oklahoma, Ole Miss, SMU, TCU, Texas, Texas A&M, and Wake Forest, he certainly has his choice of schools.

At the Houston NFTC in early April, Hill gave evidence of his physical skills, measuring in at a true 6'2, running a respectable 4.24 shuttle and ripping off a 35.8-inch vertical leap. He had previously run a 4.56 40 at another Nike event, adequate but certainly not elite speed for his position.

Likely a boundary corner at the next level, Hill won't give up much height even to the tallest wide receivers and benefits from being able to jam opponents at the line of scrimmage to disrupt their release -- asking him to defend smaller, quicker receiver from the slot in man-to-man coverage just doesn't play to his strengths.

He has some ability to play in zone coverage and to drive off his back foot and show the short-area quickness suggested by his shuttle time, with his instincts for recognizing routes also a strength.

But as is common for bigger cornerbacks, he's not at his best when asked to flip his hips and transition in off coverage and doesn't also show ideal recovery speed -- he can get in some trouble if he completely misses his jam at the line of scrimmage.

There are also some ball skills for Hill, who can finish easy interceptions and elevate to compete for jump balls because of his excellent vertical leap. Combined with his height and length, he shouldn't have issues in the red zone in college being taken advantage of on fade routes.

Run support shouldn't be an issue either because of his size -- he won't be physically overwhelmed by X receivers trying to block him and has the strength to be a solid tackler.

In all, Hill doesn't have the pure speed of many smaller cornerbacks in a blazing 40 time or the ability to run the 100 meters in the mid-10 second range. He does have excellent height, length, and leaping ability that would ease the transition to safety in a worst-case scenario in college if he can't stick at cornerback.

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