There’s no question that Trysten Hill’s onfield defensive tackle game by the Dallas Cowboys didn’t live up to the #58 of the 2019 NFL draft. Hill’s future in Big D has been in doubt since last offseason, when the defender was a popular cap victim candidate.
Ultimately, the Cowboys opted to give Hill a full season with defensive coordinator Dan Quinn. Hill still couldn’t make a big impact, appearing in just six games in 2021, recording 11 tackles and three quarterback hits. Bleacher Report’s Alex Ballentine once again sees Hill as a potential cut candidate heading to training camp.
“In his third season with the team, Trysten Hill only recorded 14.9 percent of replays,” Ballentine explained in a May 11, 2022 feature. “The Cowboys clearly didn’t prioritize changing it, despite the questionable production. They re-signed Watkins and drafted the 6’6” tall, 320-pound John Ridgeway in the fifth round. However, that could be enough to push Hill out of the roster.
“Through injuries and performance, Hill has only been on the field 18 games with five starts in three years. He was also suspended for a game following an altercation with Las Vegas Raiders guard John Simpson. Hill had three years to establish himself in a shallow position for the Cowboys. He hasn’t done it yet, and now he could give way to Ridgeway.”
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Hill was a highly acclaimed prospect who came out of the UCF in 2019 but failed to find a foothold in the NFL. To make matters worse, Hill was involved in a post-game altercation with Raiders guard John Simpson, which resulted in a one-game suspension. Quinn didn’t like Hill’s post-game punch.
“He’s going to get a call from me, that’s for sure,” Quinn told reporters Nov. 26. per Michael Gehlken of Dallas Morning News. “We just have to make sure we keep our discipline right. It takes a lot of discipline to open our fists, sometimes more than to clench them.”
Hill is entering the final season of his four-year, $4.8 million rookie contract with the Cowboys. Even if defensive tackle is able to make the final lineup, Hill still has a lot to prove as he will be a free agent in 2023. Hill is set to receive a salary of $1.1 million for the 2022 season.
While Hill’s future with the team remains in doubt, the Cowboys are hoping for better results from the rookies in their newest draft class. One player already receiving praise from the Cowboys is former South Alabama wide receiver Jalen Tolbert. Cowboys head coach Mike McCarthy sees some similarities between Tolbert and CeeDee Lamb, as well as former Dallas wideout Cedrick Wilson.
“I’m just watching him, and [Cowboys Vice President of player personnel] Will McClay and I spoke, he just reminds you on first impressions that he’s somewhere in between CeeDee as far as his movement traits go [Lamb] and Cedric Wilson,” McCarthy explained during a press conference on May 13. “That’s his body type and I think that’s a great comparison. And I think it shows what we’re looking for when you have those kinds of skills that you come in here with and you have the ability to play inside and outside. I think it’s real value.”