If you aren't a nerd, Cain Marko is the real name of Marvel's Juggernaut character. With his powers, it is said that if the Juggernaut can build enough momentum, he becomes virtually unstoppable. This is what I kept thinking about when watching Jeremy Hill after the Bengals drafted him.
The newest Bengals running back has a rare blend of size and speed. That second-gear for a 230 lbs. runner makes Hill an interesting asset to pair with Giovani Bernard. But, the key is getting Jeremy Hill up to speed quickly where his momentum makes him a powerful runner. Here's how LSU did just that.
Use the Full Back
The Bengals may not be into the traditional FB anymore because of their 2-TE offense and Gio Bernard's at his best without a FB, but in Jeremy Hill, they might want to consider keeping one. With a full back in front of Hill, the runs are simple - follow your FB and make a move off of his block.
Having the FB take the first blow from a linebacker keeps Hill clean and gathering speed into the second level where defensive backs want no part of Hill. Some of Hill's knocks are his patience and vision.
On many runs without a FB, you could see him hesitate or try to bounce things outside. Keep it simple and put a FB in front of him. You want Hill running North and South.
This was a staple in LSU's offense when Hill was in the game. A power toss puts the ball into your RB's hands as quickly as possible and allows Hill to be near full-speed by the time he reaches the second level.
How Defenses Contain Hill?
The same way you contain the Juggernaut -- You keep him building momentum and speed. If you can get to Hill within 2-yards of the line of scrimmage or get him to stop/slow his feet or change direction, the defense has the chance to bring him down fairly easily.
Hill has some room to improve as an overall tailback. His hands look very natural as a receiver, but he needs technique work as a pass protector. Currently, he's just using his bulk and strength to throw shoulders into blitzers.
Perhaps with time, his vision and patience will improve also. Until then, expect a lot of power scheme runs with Hill in the game.