Is Will Hill one of the two best safeties in the AFC North? That’s what NFL Network analyst Dave Damashek thinks, putting Hill on his all-division team at safety next to Dante Whitner of the Browns.
There’s no question Hill has the talent to be an impact player for the Ravens next season. But first, Hill must beat out Matt Elam for the starting job at strong safety. Kendrick Lewis, acquired during free agency from the Texans, has the inside track to be the starter at free safety.
The competition between Hill and Elam will be one of the most interesting during Ravens training camp. Neither Hill nor Elam has lived up to expectations during their NFL careers, but for different reasons.
Off-the-field issues, including a six-game suspension last year for violating the league’s substance policy, have held back Hill. As for Elam, he has struggled both as a tackler and in pass coverage, after entering the NFL in 2013 as a highly touted first-round pick.
Hill is a ferocious hitter at 6-foot-1, 207 pounds, and bigger than Elam (5-foot-10, 200 pounds). But defensive coordinator Dean Pees praised Elam for his improvement at the conclusion of mandatory minicamp.
Both Hill and Elam are facing a pivotal season, one that will go a long way in determining their futures with the team. Expectations for Hill have always been high. The Ravens hope Hill is ready to live up to them.
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