Does not matter the level of play, does not matter the location of the game, and it does not matter the style of offense, to win games at a high level a team needs defensive tackles. It’s proven to be one of the most critical aspects of football for decades, and that’s no different in 2021. It’s also why UCF Football is going after so many defensive linemen in general for the classes of 2022 and 2023.
For this film review, the prospect in question brings ready-to-play size to whichever college that signs him. He just visited UCF, and his talent level places him in truly elite company.
Jordan “BigBaby” Hall
Vitals: 6’4”, 302-pounds
Position: Defensive Tackle
High School: Jacksonville (Fla.) Westside
Recruitment: Offers from Arizona State, Indiana, UCF, Georgia, Florida State, Florida, Virginia Tech, Kentucky, Ole Miss, Marshall, and Connecticut. Hall also unofficially visited several programs this summer, including Georgia, Florida State, and UCF.
With Hall’s natural size, length and athleticism, there’s little doubt that he will be one of Florida’s top recruits for 2023. The only question is where he will sign? Time will tell, but expect his offer list to continue to grow throughout the next two years of his high school career.
Frame: A long lower body and powerfully built overall, Hall possesses some of the physical traits of a defensive end and some of a defensive tackle. With his height and length, he could be a two-gap defensive end for a 3-4 college defense. He’s also powerfully built through the hips which means he would be an ideal three technique in a 4-3 scheme.
Evaluating Hall's Film
Just looking at the notes from watching Hall’s film, a few of the standout points would relate to how well Hall moves laterally. Remember, this is a 300-pound prospect. That’s a player that usually plays more directly ahead than changes direction and moves well to his left and right. Play after play, Hall displayed the ability to hit a gap and penetrate the backfield by going laterally before changing direction again and beelining towards the ball carrier. Here’s a great example.
Hall uses an inside rip move in which he shoots his left arm upwards from a cocked “L” position and moves the offensive lineman’s hand and arm out of the way. It’s very well executed by Hall, and it allowed him an avenue towards the quarterback.
Hall did not record the sack, but he deflected the pass and it’s picked off by one of his teammates. It’s a tremendous play and demonstrated how athletic and quick for his size he’s already become.
This next play provided insight into Hall’s power, his technique and his ability to run in space. Hall two-hand stabs the offensive tackle, then uses a two-handed swipe to move the offensive tackle’s hands away from himself. From there, he’s headed towards the signal caller during a quarterback run. He completely blows up the play and his teammates clean it up for a tackle for loss.
This is the type of next-level play that college coaches want to see. Yes, he’s explosive and created a powerful move that pushed the offensive tackle backwards before using the two-handed swipe, but he also did everything quickly. There was little if any wasted movement. This next play is what an inside rush from the defensive end positon should look like.
Whenever a team possesses a defensive lineman like Hall that can move positions, it's much more difficult for an offensive line to project how to block him. Double team? Run away from Hall's side of the line? Those will certainly be two options. His versatility will cause several teams to change blocking schemes right before the snap as well because he's lined up some place differently than expected. He's a problem up front.
There’s a reason that UCF wanted Hall on campus and why he’s also being recruited by several of the other programs down South and beyond. He’s a talented prospect that could play in multiple defensive styles and also be a prospect that disrupts the opposing offense with nothing more than his natural talent.
Hall’s pass rushing ability alone made him a Division I prospect, and he’s not even remotely refined with his technique. Translation: serious upside. Hall is a prospect that UCF and many other major college programs could mold into a college All-American. The talent is there to develop.