Rookie center, Trey Hill, turned in one of several impressive performances against the Buccaneers in the Cincinnati Bengals’ first preseason game. He is listed at 6’3″, 320 pounds. He is a mountain of a man who was able to hold the door open for Bengals running backs on several occasions. Hill looks like he is ready to move mountains that are the AFC North defensive linemen.
And this should come as no surprise. Hill was drafted by the Bengals in the sixth round out of Georgia so you know he was built for this. Going up against SEC defensive linemen week in and week out seems to have paid off with a very good opening game.
- Here, on this play, Hill anchored and stopped cold defensive tackle, Kobe Smith. Even though the play was blown up, Hill was able to show off his power.
- On this play, Hill passes off the defensive lineman to the left guard, Lamont Gaillard, before moving up to crush the linebacker. This shows his power, agility, and feel for the action.
- In this final clip, we can see Hill get to the second level once again and dominate the defender. Hill keeps his feet moving and forces his man down the field.
One of the mountains he has to climb going forward is the depth chart. According to the official Bengals depth chart, he is third behind Trey Hopkins and Billy Price. If we were to go off of the order of appearance in the game against Tampa Bay, Hill was also behind center/guard, Keaton Sutherland. It should be noted that Sutherland played well in his stint at right guard.
Even though Hill played well, he has to show more. He only played in the fourth quarter, which means he was playing against backups and guys who might not make the Buccaneers roster. Hopefully, he will get a chance to go up against tougher competition in the next two games.
Also, there is his agility and quickness to question. He did not test particularly well in those areas before the draft. The good news is that he did not bench press very well either. Yet, he sure did look stronger than all the defenders he blocked Saturday night.
Nevertheless, for him to get to cornerbacks on a screen proved to be a bit of a reach. On other screens, however, where he was not called upon to block defensive backs, he did well to peel back and get a block on pursuing defenders.
- So, first, can he move up the Bengals depth chart with only two more preseason games to show his worth.
- Second, can he show that he is capable of reaching second-level defenders on sweeps and screens?
- And finally, can he show some versatility and play guard as well?
If he can, not only is it a good bet that he will make the final 53, who knows where he could end up on the final depth chart when the final roster is announced.