Will Hill Suspended 10 Games: Latest Details, Comments and Reaction

Tyler ConwayFeatured ColumnistMarch 16, 2016

Baltimore Ravens strong safety Will Hill reacts after a 33-27 win over the Cleveland Browns in an NFL football game Monday, Nov. 30, 2015, in Cleveland. (AP Photo/David Richard)
David Richard/Associated Press

The NFL suspended former Baltimore Ravens safety Will Hill for the first 10 games of the 2016 season Wednesday for a violation of the league's substance abuse policy.

ESPN's Adam Schefter and Adam Caplan reported the news. The Ravens released Hill earlier Wednesday afternoon, perhaps a sign they knew the suspension was coming.

This is already the fourth time Hill has been suspended since joining the league in 2012. He failed a test for Adderall as a rookie, went to rehab following a second ban in 2013 and was suspended once more in 2014 for six games. The New York Giants, who signed Hill as an undrafted free agent, released him following the third suspension.

Baltimore brought Hill in despite his history of drug use, and the move paid early dividends. He had a strong 2014 campaign, recording 41 tackles and an interception in 10 games. The Ravens rewarded Hill with a two-year extension, and he appeared to be turning things around.

"I can't do it, ever," Hill said of drug use in 2014, per Aaron Wilson, then of the Baltimore Sun. "It would kill my career. It would be the death of me."

Unfortunately, it didn't carry over to 2015. Hill recorded 64 tackles, a sack and an interception while playing in all 16 games, but he was a glaring minus in the Ravens secondary. As noted by Jamison Hensley of ESPN.com, Pro Football Focus metrics ranked Hill as the 70th-best safety in football from Week 9 until the end of the season.

The Ravens benched Hill in favor of Lardarius Webb for the final two games of the season. With the team adding Eric Weddle in free agency, it was clear Hill was already the odd man out.

"You can bring both of these guys down and make them blitz and bring it really effectively," head coach John Harbaugh said of starting Weddle and Webb together, per Hensley. "I think it's going be really hard. ... You're not going to know who is down and who is deep. That can be a big benefit for a defense."

Having just turned 26, Hill's NFL career could possibly be over already. His combination of poor play and off-field issues makes it nearly impossible to justify another team taking a chance. It's clear he'll at least have to get help and prove to teams the issues are in the past.

After four suspensions in as many years, though, it's going to take a lot of convincing.


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