Though many prospects follow their father’s footsteps by excelling in athletics at their alma maters, Cobi’s mother, Deborah, was the trailblazing athlete in the Hamilton household. She and Joy Dillard were among the first African-American female student-athletes on campus when they suited up for the inaugural Arkansas varsity women’s basketball team in the 1976-77 season.
But the long, lean Hamilton started making his own name as part of a Razorback passing offense ranking 10th in the nation in 2009. His best game came in the team’s win over Ole Miss, as his three catches covered more than one-third of his season receiving yardage (131 of 347) and he scored two of his three touchdowns of the year. He became a more regular contributor as a sophomore, especially after Greg Childs went out due to injury; he averaged nearly 20 yards a catch (32-630, 19.7 per) and scored six times -– twice in the team’s upset win over LSU on plays of 80 and 85 yards. Hamilton’s numbers dropped off a bit in his junior season (34-542, 4 TD) as the team spread the wealth among a slew of receivers. Hamilton’s speed and strength breaking tackles led his breakout year as a senior, recording 90 catches for 1335 yards (14.8 YPC) and five touchdowns as one of the few targets that quarterback Tyler Wilson trusted. His production earned him first-team All-Conference honors as well as third-team All-American honors. Hamilton also ran track for the Razorbacks for the 2010 season, running a personal-best time of 21.09 in the 200-meter dash at the Arkansas Last Chance Meet.
Big target with a well-built frame who projects as a potential outside starter. Uses his body to get position on his man on inside routes. Displays an extra gear once he gets the ball in his hands. Physical after the catch, showing the ability to break arm tackles. Flashes a quick move after the catch and the balance to leave a leaning cornerback behind, can also stiff-arm smaller defensive backs trying to wrap him up in space. Will through jams at the line of scrimmage, but still needs to improve in this area. Sharp cuts on inside breaking routes at the top of his stem. Adjust well to the flight path of the ball in the air. Should only improve his overall skill set with more opportunities.
Occasionally runs by defenders with his long strides, but scouts won’t expect him to do the same at the next level. Will need to show he can drop his hips and have quick feet to run all NFL routes. Rounds off his cuts on out-braking routes. Concentration is a major issues, as he drops a couple of easily catchable balls a game. Limited catch radius on the move and will fail adjust to low or back-shoulder throws -– quarterback needs to put the ball on his chest. Not a natural hands catcher. Does not win at the line of scrimmage against press as consistently as expected given his build.
Hamilton used his size, strength and speed with the ball in his hands for a huge increase in production as a senior (he had just 542 receiving yards and four touchdowns on a prolific Razorbacks offense in 2011) while also proving he owns the speed and agility to win one-on-one battles against pro cornerbacks. He has some flaws and his concentration wavers. However, he was the only target that Tyler Wilson trusted in 2012 and it showed in his statline (90-1,335-5 TDs). If he runs well at the combine, he could find himself in the third round of the 2012 draft.
Future Hall of Famer
A once-in-a-generation type prospect who could change how his position is played
An impact player with the ability/intangibles to become a Pro Bowl player. Expect to start immediately except in a unique situation (i.e. behind a veteran starter).
A quality player who will contribute to the team early on and is expected to develop into a starter. A reliable player who brings value to the position.
A prospect with the ability to make team as a backup/role player. Needs to be a special teams contributor at applicable positions. Players in the high range of this category might have long-term potential.
A player with solid measurables, intangibles, college achievements, or a developing skill that warrants an opportunity in an NFL camp. In the right situation, he could earn a place on a 53-man roster, but most likely will be a practice squad player or a camp body.