Everyone loves to watch film of the recruits that are physical freaks, but not everyone of those kids has figured out how to play the game just yet.
That’s why I like watching players like cornerback Damar Hamlin so much. He definitely has great athletic talent, but his game is advanced for his age. He’s just a good football player that looks like he could step onto a college campus right now and not look out of place on the field.
Hamilin is a fluid athlete with good speed. He has ideal height and length for the cornerback position, but needs to add weight and strength.
He’s a tremendous player in zone coverage. His eye discipline is excellent and it allows him to not only be responsible within the defense, but get himself in a position to make plays. He passes off receivers well and will plant and explode to break on the football.
He has very good ball skills and also has the athleticism to finish interceptions and gain big yards.
His high school team appears to play a lot more zone than man coverage, but I like his mirroring skills and he appears to be smooth in his transitions. He closes on the ball well.
I love his aggression as a tackler. A very willing player in run support that does a nice job of wrapping up and wants to make an impact on contact. Sometimes will not bring his feet and leap and grab instead, but hopefully that habit goes away once he physically matures and gets stronger. Will fight to get off of blocks and also flashes as a blitzer.
He has athletic tools and physical measurables to be a strong corner in man coverage, but his awareness in coverage and ability to tackle well makes him a candidate to move to safety if corner doesn’t work out.
Hamlin is just a darn good football player that does pretty much everything well. His versatility makes his ceiling really low. I think he is going to be a very good defensive back for multiple seasons at the next level and could contribute very early in his career.
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Jamie Uyeyama was a way too small defensive tackle at Idaho State University and a more appropriately sized rush end at Simon Fraser University. He was a coach at the college and high school level and is the son of Ron Uyeyama, a member of the Delta Sports Hall of Fame and high school football coach for over 30 years (hence the site name, Son of a Coach).