Originally written on New York Sports-Kings  |  Last updated 11/15/14

Those who are familiar with local high school football should remember Will Hill.  Hill starred at St. Peter’s Prep before he took his career to the University of Florida, where he played strong safety and special teams.

In 2007  as a senior in high school, Hill was named New Jersey Offensive Player of the Year by the Star Ledger and was one of the top high school recruits in the nation.  From the look of things, it seemed that Hill had a future in the NFL.

His skill has never been questioned, but his off the field character is something that scared teams away when he declared for the NFL Draft in 2011.  Besides being arrested in 2011 for driving with a suspended license in Florida, his Twitter account made him famous and labeled him as “troubled.”

Will Hill (38) turned heads in the preseason and earned a spot on the 53 man roster. His failed drug test however will put his spot in jeopardy, but the Giants should hold on to the talented safety. PHOTO COURTESY: DOUGLAS JONES/US PRESSWIRE

Despite the setbacks, Hill earned a spot with the Giants this offseason after an impressive training camp and a new attitude that made it seem as though he had changed his ways.  Not to say that he hasn’t,  but Hill’s career took another alarming turn on Monday.

Hill was suspended four games for violating the league’s performance enhancing substances policy after a positive drug test for Adderall.  The suspension comes just as another safety, Tyler Sash, returns to the Giants.  Sash was also suspended for using Adderall.

The suspension is just the latest thing that makes people scratch their heads about Hill.  Why does the kid from West Orange put himself in bad situations time in and time out?

A failed drug test is the last thing that Hill needed on his resume, especially as he clings to a roster spot every week.  It would normally be a death sentence for a guy in his position (especially with his track record), but it should be different in this instance.

After the suspension, Hill didn’t make any excuses and owned up to his mistakes through a statement (no, he didn’t tweet this):

“I received a doctor’s prescription for Adderall prior to signing with the Giants.  Shortly after signing with the team, I was in a meeting with (director of player development) Charles Way, who reviewed the list of the league’s banned substances. I knew at that point that this may be an issue.  I was tested and the results came back that Adderall was in my system.  I appealed but lost the appeal. I accept full responsibility for this situation, and it won’t happen again.”

The maturity showed in the statement may be surprising but it is a testament to Hill’s maturity level.  He may not be a saint, but this is a difference that the Giants saw when they gave him a chance to make the team.

At 22 years old, Hill has already had an interesting career.  Despite the latest speed bump, the Giants should give him another chance.  In Sunday’s 41-27 win over the Browns, Hill forced a key fumble on special teams that led to a Giants touchdown.

At the time of the fumble, the team was in the middle of a comeback and had the Browns on the ropes in the first half.  It could have easily been the play of the game as the Giants never looked back from that point on.

One thing is clear about Hill.  If he can keep away from any off the field distractions, he has the potential to be a real player in this league.  If he can remain humble during this suspension and show the Giants that he has learned from his past transgressions, he could be a real steal for the team.

However, the biggest question surrounding the young safety is who exactly is Will Hill?  Is he the troubled athlete who finds his name in the news for the wrong reasons?  Or, is he a changed man that is ready to make an impact at the NFL level?

No one is ever sure when a Victor Cruz is going to pop up on their team, but the Giants may have found another one with Hill.  With the skill that Hill possesses, keeping him is a chance that the team should take.

Follow us on Twitter – @NYSportskings

Contributor – Dave Ragazzo – @DRagazzo_Sports

The post The Peculiar Case of Will Hill appeared first on New York Sports Kings.


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