2022 NFL Draft prospect Michigan safety Dax Hill has been very productive throughout his three-year tenure with the Wolverines. Hill is a versatile defender who has NFL bloodlines, his brother Justice plays for the Baltimore Ravens, and stepped on campus with big expectations and lived up to them.
Daxton Hill – 6′ 0″- 190 – 3rd year Junior – S – Michigan
I struggled where to put Dax Hill in the safety rankings. He has the skill set to do almost anything on the field, with only two safeties rated higher than him. Hill flashes good range playing single-high and can make plays red line to red line.
Hill aligned at various roles in the Michigan defense but he does his best work playing single-high safety or as a nickel defender in the slot. He is a smooth and efficient mover in coverage and has very good straight-line speed. In zone coverage, Hill flashes excellent eyes, instincts, and awareness to peel off his zone and locate the ball and make a play. He has good short-area quickness and closing burst to make plays on the football or tackle anything completed in front of him.
Hill has good overall athleticism to be an effective man cover player both playing high safety and in the slot, he can get lazy in his transitions and can be slow to open up and run, leaving separation between him and the receiver. Additionally, while Hill is tough and ultra-competitive both in the passing game and in run support, his lack of size and strength leave him at a disadvantage at the catch point as well as playing in the box.
What I Like
- Football IQ/Instincts
- Athleticism in space
- Tackling Success
Dax Hill please, that man has a family pic.twitter.com/tUIPW7DDCf
— BULLYBALL (@RealBullyBall) October 2, 2021
Hill has very impressive instincts and awareness. He shows the ability to read the quarterback’s eyes in zone coverage and allows him to take him to the spot. He is quick to read and diagnose run plays and is very good at sniffing out screens and pick pattern concepts.
Hill is an extremely versatile player at the back end of this defense. He can play single-high free safety, nickel, outside corner, and even has aligned as a dime backer. His blend of athleticism and toughness are exactly what NFL defensive coordinators are looking for out of a defensive back as it allows them to be creative on where he is utilized.
Hill flashes very good range playing single-high safety. He possesses excellent straight-line speed having been clocked as low as 4.3 in the 40-yard dash. His speed along with his eyes allows him to make plays from red line to red line.
An ultra-competitive tackler, Hill is never afraid to mix it up and throw his body around. He is quick and urgent to fill running lanes coming from his single-high position and is a good open-field tackler. His lack of size and length hinders his ability to consistently bring bigger ball-carriers to the ground and he will be overaggressive in pursuit at times, leaving room for cutbacks.
— TheWolverine.com (@TheWolverineOn3) October 5, 2019
An urgent player in the run game. Hill is quick to diagnose the run and comes downhill in a hurry. For a slender player, Hill is absolutely not afraid to make tackles and will throw his body around.
Hill is an excellent athlete with speed, burst, and change of direction ability to thrive as a cover player. He is a fluid mover in space and has loose hips to turn and run.
Hill is a fluid mover in space, having loose hips to open up and turn and run. His movements are smooth and there is very little wasted movement in his transitions. He just needs to be more urgent when it’s time to open up and rely a bit less on his closing speed.
With Hill’s straight-line speed and toughness, he projects to be a rockstar on special teams from day one. He was very good playing special teams for the Wolverines covering kicks early on in his career and he will certainly be an asset in that phase of the game at the next level.
What I Haven’t Seen Yet
- Ball Skills
- Staying Calm
Ball skills are an area where I wish he had more production, specifically in interceptions. He’s only brought down four in his three-year career. That being said, his ball skills are excellent. When the ball is in the air and he has an opportunity to make a play on it, he usually does.
If I’m breaking hit down even further, he needs to work on his hands and focus on catching the ball.
Hill also has a tendency to be a little anxious pre-snap. There are times when he is moving his feet, which means he is starting to overthink. Also, there’s slight panic with his back to the football, and he’s swift to locate the ball when working his eyes back late.
I would also like to see him get stronger. He still has a slight frame, I would like to see him bulk up a bit and add more functioning strength. This will help him when he lines up in press coverage and also become an even stronger tackler in space.
A true football player. Hill is as tough as they come and always looks to deliver a blow upon contact. He plays the game the right way, playing through the whistle and always hustling to the ball even when the play goes the opposite way. His intensity and passion are evident and he plays much, much bigger than his frame should allow.
Combine/**Pro Day Stats** **When Available**
RAS **When Available**
Role: Immediate starting Safety
GRADE: Mid 1st round – Early 2nd Round
COMP: John Johnson III
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