2020 Season Countdown: #7 Brad Hawkins

Tag: Brad Hawkins


15Oct 2020
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2020 Season Countdown: #7 Brad Hawkins

Brad Hawkins (image via MLive)

Name: Brad Hawkins
Height: 
6’1″
Weight: 
218 lbs.
High school: 
Suffield (CT) Suffield Academy
Position: 
Safety
Class: 
Senior
Jersey number: 
#20
Last year: 
I ranked Hawkins #33 and said he would be a backup safety (LINK). He started ten games and made 53 tackles with 1 pass breakup.
TTB Rating:
 78

I typically have an annual “Why did PFF grade that guy so high?” situation, and the 2019 version of that guy was Brad Hawkins. He was First Team All-Big Ten to Pro Football Focus (as the “flex” defender) despite not being on the coaches’ all-conference team and only being named honorable mention by the media. He managed to get his hands on the ball just 1 time, which came in the season opener against Middle Tennessee. After three years in the program, he has just 2 career pass breakups. He is a solid tackler coming up from the third level, but is he much more than that?

Maybe. I sure hope so. Because he’s the only returning starter in the secondary. Michigan lost safety Josh Metellus and cornerback Lavert Hill to graduation/the NFL, and cornerback Ambry Thomas opted out of the 2020 season. Budding star Dax Hill also returns at safety, but Hawkins has to be a steadying force on the back end. Everyone is unproven and almost totally inexperienced behind the starters.

Hawkins has been prone to some coverage busts, and he’s a little grabby for my liking. I think he can be taken advantage of in coverage if opposing offensive lines can hold up long enough to give quarterbacks a chance to throw. But Michigan returns a couple of the top defensive ends in the conference and has a blitz-happy defensive coordinator. Hopefully Hawkins can improve his coverage a little bit while continuing to offer solid run support.

Prediction: Starting strong safety

Hit the jump for some of his 2019 highlights.

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6Dec 2019
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2019 PFF All-Big Ten Team

Brad Hawkins

Pro Football Focus named their All-Big Ten team (LINK), and while I won’t go about posting every all-conference team, I wanted to make note of this first teamer:

[Brad] Hawkins was one of the most balanced defenders in the BigTen, with grades hovering around 80.0 in run defense (80.6), tackling (83.9) and coverage (80.3),” they wrote. The longest catch he allowed on the season went for only 25 yards, and it was the only catch of 20-plus yards he allowed all year.”

Hawkins was the culprit on K.J. Hamler’s long touchdown against Penn State. Some people – including former Michigan defensive backs – were going off on Twitter, blaming Don Brown for putting Josh Metellus on Hamler one-on-one.

Hit the jump for more.

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26Nov 2019
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Michigan vs. Indiana Awards

Donovan Peoples-Jones (image via Wolverines Wire)

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Let’s see more of this guy on offense . . . good Shea Patterson. Over the past three weeks, Patterson is completing 65.5% of his passes for 10.4 yards per attempt with 10 touchdowns and 1 interception. And the worst of those three performances was against Maryland, not MSU or Indiana. This particular week saw him throw for 366 yards and 5 touchdowns on 11.4 yards per attempt.

Hit the jump for more.

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22Oct 2019
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Michigan vs. Penn State Awards

Ronnie Bell (image via Wolverines Wire)

Let’s see more of this guy on offense . . . Ronnie Bell. Maybe this is an emotional reaction to the backlash Bell received for dropping the potential game-tying or game-winning pass on Saturday night, but I thought the kid played very well overall. He caught 5 passes for 82 yards, he blocks, and he earns yards after the catch. He’s Michigan’s version of Julian Edelman. And yes, that means he’s Michigan’s best receiver.

Hit the jump for more.

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