Kansas City Chiefs Receiver Tyreek Hill Is Turning Heads

Originally an afterthought and labeled a highly controversial draft pick, Kansas City Chiefs rookie wide receiver Tyreek Hill has been busy this off-season. He is on a mission to prove his critics wrong.

Despite pleading guilty to assaulting his girlfriend two years ago, Hill, a West Alabama product, was selected by the Chiefs in the fifth round of the 2016 NFL Draft. The Chiefs organization as a whole received a lot of heat for taking a chance on Hill, especially considering the NFL’s recent crackdown on instances of domestic violence. Hill, however, has since owned up to his past. Though questions remain regarding his character, he has undoubtedly been one of the most impressive players at Chiefs training camp thus far.

Kansas City Chiefs Receiver Tyreek Hill Is Turning Heads

Perhaps the most notable aspect of Hill’s game is his blazing speed. According to The Kansas City Star, Hill trumps Devin Hester as the fastest player Chiefs special teams coach Dave Toub has ever worked with. Hill’s 4.24 40-yard dash time at his pro day matched the fastest 40-yard dash time in NFL Combine history, which was set by Chris Johnson in 2008. His 200-meter dash time of 20.14 in high school would have been the fastest among college athletes in 2013 and would have placed him sixth at the 2012 Summer Olympics in London.

Watching Hill burn 2015 Defensive Rookie of the Year Marcus Peters on go-routes during camp is a thing of beauty. He has ridiculous ability to create separation. There is no question that the Chiefs will try to implement him into their offensive game plan. Hill draws comparisons to teammate De’Anthony Thomas, but surpasses him in every category, including speed, size, and catching abilities. Many believed pads would affect Hill’s elusiveness. He has been just as electrifying in training camp as he has been the entire off-season, and he is starting to prove the doubters wrong.

Special Teams

Hill is currently listed as the Chiefs No. 1 punt returner and might see action returning kickoffs as well. He may not be running many routes early in the season, but his speed could make him useful in the slot. Like Los Angeles Rams receiver Tavon Austin, the Chiefs need to find ways to get Hill the ball in space. They can use him as a traditional receiver or running back–wide receiver hybrid. After all, Hill was very successful running the ball when he played for Oklahoma State in 2014. He notched 534 rushing yards on 102 carries while also catching the ball 31 times for 281 yards. A year or two down the road, he could very well play the same role Dexter McCluster did with the Chiefs in 2011.

The main concern is whether or not Hill will be able to maintain his speed through contact. While he can bump off big cornerbacks and get physical at the line of scrimmage if he needs to, it remains to be seen how well he can shake off tackles once he has the ball in his hands. That will be something the Chiefs take a closer look at in the coming weeks as they solidify the depth chart. With that said, Hill’s an exceptional athlete. He’ll certainly be someone to keep an eye on in Saturday’s preseason tilt against the Seattle Seahawks.

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