On the gridiron, Kansas City Chiefs wide receiver Tyreek Hill brings speed and acceleration that can be matched by very few. However, football isn’t the only sport the speedster excels at. This week, Hill took to the basketball court to show off some impressive hops.
On Monday, the three-time All-Pro took to Twitter to crowdsource potential open gyms in the Miami, Florida area, which inevitably drew the attention of the Chiefs, including vice president of sports medicine and performance, Rick Burkholder, who got into a playful exchange with Hill.
As it turns out, the 5-foot-10, 185-pound Hill found a high school gym to get some work in on his 29th birthday. A video released by Overtime on Tuesday revealed that work included plenty of pickup buckets and a couple monster dunks, including a 360 and windmill.
That’s pretty sweet, Tyreek, but we’re still patiently waiting for the real highlight of the offseason: the Adam Schefter foot race.
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Hill’s No. 2 Running Mate Likely Lost to Free Agency
Hill is coming off one of the most productive campaigns of his decorated five-year NFL career in 2020. Despite a back-and-forth battle with tight end Travis Kelce for the team and league lead in receiving for much of the year, the speedster ultimately finished 140 yards behind his teammate as Kansas City rested its starters for the season finale.
Hill’s 87 regular season receptions did match his career-high from 2018 and his 17 scrimmage touchdowns (15 receiving) were a new personal best, as well as the second-most in the NFL last season behind only Green Bay’s Davante Adams (18).
With a full slate of games next season, Hill should be a solid bet to post similar, if not even better numbers across the board. However, he may have a new No. 2 option across the field from him as Sammy Watkins gets set to hit the open market for the second straight offseason. Only this time, “It’ll be a lot more challenging to retain him and bring him back this year,” according to general manager Brett Veach this week.
Hill to Headline Young Receiving Corps in 2021
The writing on the wall — such as the nearly $20 million the team needs to shed to get under the new projected team salary cap of $185 million — suggests that the former No. 4 overall pick has played his last snaps in a Chiefs uniform. However, even with Demarcus Robinson’s contract also expiring on March 17, Veach and company seem comfortable with the core they have in place at the position.
“I think we’re certainly blessed to have Tyreek Hill and expecting big things out of Mecole Hardman this year and I think we’re all excited about the development of Byron Pringle,” Veach told reporters on March 1. “So, we feel really good about those three players.
“I can’t see us running out of the gates the first week of free agency and sign a receiver. I don’t think that’s where we’re at. But if the market falls and things make sense for us, I think we’ll be smart and selective. Then if something doesn’t work out in free agency I think there’s depth in that position to address it potentially in the draft.”
With Hill (29) as the elder statesman alongside Hardman (23 on March 12), Pringle (27) and multiple reserve/future pass-catchers all under age 30, the Chiefs receiving corps figures to get younger in 2021 if a veteran free agent isn’t added to the group. Hill previously predicted a 1,000-yard season for Hardman in 2020, but the sophomore finished with a similar 41-560-4 line that we saw from him as a rookie. If Hardman can put some late-season blunders behind him for next season, the upside that the Chiefs gambled on with the 56th pick in 2019 is most certainly there.
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Chris Licata is an NFL contributor covering the Kansas City Chiefs from enemy territory in Denver, Colorado. Follow him on Twitter @Chris__Licata or join the Heavy on Chiefs Facebook community for the latest out of Chiefs Kingdom!