Will Hill released and other notes from Ticats practice

Day three of practice and, this being the Ticats, there is plenty of news to report. The highlights:

• the team has released DB/LB Will Hill, who started every game this season at either strong-side linebacker or safety (except for the one where he was suspended for gabbing an official.) He was second on the team in tackles with 25.

Given his performance level and the fact that he started last week, the release comes as something of a surprise. That said, he had also taken a number of undisciplined penalties – beyond grabbing the official – and had left the team twice to deal with family issues.

• with Hill gone, Canadian Courtney Stephen is back as the starting safety after being relegated to a back up role last week.

• looks like halfback Emanuel Davis will make his first start of the season after missing the first six games with a lower body injury.

• Canadian defensive tackle Ted Laurent sat out Thursday’s practice but word is he is expected to play on Saturday against the Bombers. Fellow national Mike Atkinson hasn’t practiced all week, however. It’s possible that Evan Gill, who has missed all of this season due to injury will make his debut in a reserve role.

• Tony Washington will get the start at right tackle after being signed this week. By my count, he’ll be the fourth starting right tackle the Ticats have used in the first seven games of the season.

• the Ticats have added international free agent defensive tackle Nikita Whitlock to the practice roster. Whitlock, 26, spent the last three seasons with the New York Giants. In 2015, he was named the Giants’ starting fullback and suited up in 14 games at both fullback and defensive tackle, registering six tackles and one quarterback sack.

• the Ticats have added defensive back Demond Washington to the active roster from the six game injured list but he is not expected to play Saturday.

Drew Edwards

Drew Edwards

Drew Edwards is into his eighth season covering the CFL and the Ticats for the Hamilton Spectator. He is the founder and editor of 3DownNation.
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Drew Edwards
About Drew Edwards (960 Articles)
Drew Edwards is into his eighth season covering the CFL and the Ticats for the Hamilton Spectator. He is the founder and editor of 3DownNation.

37 Comments on Will Hill released and other notes from Ticats practice

  1. Shocking that Will Hill could be released but there must be some issues there.

    • riderontheisland // August 10, 2017 at 3:42 pm //

      Ya the issue was him being a bad teammate and taking many costly penalties. Maybe when he grows up they will welcome him back.

    • When you are on your way to first place but currently 0 and 6, all! are expendable! Anyone can complain, the Cats are instead finding solutions! 2017: Yhe Year of the Cats!

  2. Crazy, but at least they are not sitting still

  3. Will Hill reminded me of K.D. Williams. Lots of talent but undisciplined and a bit of a headache.

  4. poster Steve above is bang on- beat me to it…WH was a discipline problem and cost the TEAM in ways beyond the suspension incident. His 15yrd personal foul late in the Edm home game (after a second down stop) sustained the eventual game-winning drive…can’t have that stuff.

  5. Conan the Librarian // August 10, 2017 at 1:31 pm //

    Odd…if they were going to release Hill, why would they do it on Day 3 of the weekly practice schedule? Did something happen yesterday that caused his release? Does that mean that Hill practised the first 2 days?

  6. Terrence Whittaker // August 10, 2017 at 1:36 pm //

    They sure love Rogers! It must because he is leading the league in blown coverages and to this point, in the season he has a perfect record of getting beaten by every pass thrown his way.

    • This week will surely be Rogers make or break game with Davis reportedly coming back to the lineup and Washington being activated off the 6 game injured list though not suiting up this Saturday. It’s going to get crowded in the secondary.

      Add to that Butler surely returning sometime soon which could slide Stephen over to another spot in the secondary.

  7. Will Hill has been “skating on thin ice”. He showed a lot of promise, in his 1st few games. Blocked FG’s and tackling. Everyone gave him the benefit of the doubt, when he grabbed that official. During his 1 game suspension, his history in his NFL playing years surfaced. Substance abuse issues, run ins with the law. Now he still has had more family issues, and is playing undisciplined football, taking foolish penalties. He was moved from linebacker, to DB, and that didn’t pan out to well. It’s either a numbers game, with the return of Emanuel E. Davis and Butler soon. Or it could possibly be an attitude problem within the locker room and or coaches? Who knows really, I am sure some team will take a chance on him, and come back and haunt the Cats. Like every other release or lost free agent, Ti-Cat’s have lost.

  8. Picked up by Toronto I think

    • Nope sounds more like a “Jones” kind of guy so he’ll be heading west! 🙂

    • Ticats fans chill // August 10, 2017 at 9:17 pm //

      Hill is going to Toronto, and there he will lead the team in picks, sacks and tackles and will be named D PLAYER OF THE YEAR
      Knowing our stupid luck.. He will end up like ellingson,McDaniel and more

  9. Tyms will be next.Twelve catches in Seven games he is hardly a keeper.Will Hill like Tymes did not meet expectations.

  10. If Hill didn’t have on and off field discipline issues, he would still be in NFL. Now he has likely cashed his last football pay check.

  11. Sad… Hill looked to be the future of this defense. Great talent who lacked discipline. When u actually look at this defense it is the exact same as it was last year except for Leonard. So much for a revamped defense.

    • The Iceman // August 10, 2017 at 5:03 pm //

      Going off last week players that started on D for the Cats that were not starters last season:
      Leonard, Atkinson, CAPICCIOTTI, Rogers, Unamba, Wooten, and Hill was also a starter last week. That is a lot of players in new positions.

    • Sometimes these guys get it over time. How many teams dumped Jerome Messam before the finally got his head straightened out in Calgary? Adarious Bowman went through a couple of teams before he figured out how to be a pro in Edmonton.

  12. I don’t know how you think it’s the same Defence
    Drake Nevis gone
    Rico Murray
    Johnny Sears
    Cassius Vaughn, gone gone gone
    and that’s just by memory, I’m sure there are others.

    • Sears played in exactly FIVE games over 2 years so hardly made an impact on the field. I also recall many comments about Vaughn’s play last season (constantly getting beat) and fans who were upset that the Ticats even re-signed him in the offseason!

  13. Sorry for the confusion the point I was trying to make is that we try to figure out stability at positions we lack in I.e corner and strong side linebacker and every year it’s the same. A new corner each week and about six games out of a SSL before he either gets hurt, released or is picked up halfway into the season.

  14. Plus we technically don’t have a permanent starter at the second dt spot as Coleman and Atkinson rotate, just like last year when Nevis and Atkinson rotated.

  15. We are weak at the exact same positions as last year on defense the only spot he improved on was the SSL but now that hills gone we’re left with the man (Ellis) who lost his job to hill. Leonard is actually an improvement as well but the secondary still feels the same as last year talent wise.

  16. Will Hill is still in love with the 420. And it’s become an issue.

  17. Paul Smith // August 10, 2017 at 6:56 pm //

    Just freeing up the #1 jersey for one Terrell Sinkfield

  18. Will Hill will be flipping burgers in a USA city near you soon!

  19. Ticats fans chill // August 10, 2017 at 9:14 pm //

    Hey the ticatz ARE THE F****** STUPIDEST TEAM I HAVE EVER SEEN IN MU DAMN LIFE, Austin= “oh yah we suck and the only person who is playing good is will hill, so we are going to REALESE the NFL VET, LUKE WTF

  20. Austin should have released himself and kept Hill. If Hill was the D player who called out Collaros at the famous “gee let’s stay in Alberta and bond together” slugfest at the high school facility (most appropriate) in Calgary then not only should he have been retained but given a bonus as well.

  21. RFD and others- Hill is not some young rookie who just needs to grow up like Messam and Bowman last decade. He is an old vet who has repeatedly worn out his welcome with NFL teams and had multiple fines for on field conduct and multiple suspensions for off field conduct. As much as some TiCat fans are hysterical to oust Austin, releasing Hill is the appropriate move. I have been saying how much I like his playing ability but c’mon, enough is enough. At 27, the NFL is done with him and the CFL is a small fraternity. As good as he has played at times, he is very likely finished as a pro football player.

  22. Changes are happening and I like them

  23. Well-said BigGus – Hill has probably burned the final bridge in his football career. He was given a chance by Austin and proved once too often that he couldn’t or wouldn’t abide by the rules. A shame when such talent goes to waste because of behaviour but no one wants a “cancer” in the locker room regardless of how skilled the player.

  24. brian johnson // August 11, 2017 at 7:03 pm //

    he will be picked up in next 4 weeks. relax, enjoy.

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