NAME: David Sills V
SCHOOL: West Virginia
CONFERENCE: Big 12
POSITION: Wide Receiver
JERSEY: No. 13
RECRUITMENT RATING: 3-star
WT: 205 lbs
Route Running –Has some surprising polish despite limited game experience at the position. Shows good footwork to create space vs. press coverage and effective cadence in gearing down for hard angled routes. Tempers speed well on timing concepts to allow space to bubble open.
Hands –Has had some hard bounces off the fingertips and palms, not nearly effective as a body catcher when needing to put the ball in the cradle in traffic. Plucks the ball and shows excellent high point abilities. Large catch radius thanks to length.
Contested Catch Ability –Picks up the ball in flight and has made some strong plays of the ball after having to out-work defenders and reach for the football first. Is a headache in the red zone thanks to fade skills and rips arms off of body violently to ensure a finished catch.
Run After Catch Ability –Does not have great contact balance, can get chopped down with modest contact in the open field. Strength shines at the catch point when able to collect himself on the way down, will stiff-arm or shrug off potential tackles.
Football IQ –Has room to grow, given late transition to a new position after being a hotly recruited QB prospect in high school. That said, understands leverage, spacing, how to make himself available for his quarterback vs. zone coverage and the need to sell false breaks.
Vertical Receiving –Has some of the best vertical deep ball skills in the class. Big time receiver in over the shoulder opportunities, will slow down and stay underneath the ball to prevent having to deal with extra contact. Good concentration and effective transition from catch to run opportunities.
Change of Direction Skills –Doesn’t have a lot of short area quickness. Efficient steps minimize transition time but simply lacks the quicks in tight spaces to stress defenders laterally. As a result will need some extra space (slot or isolated alignments) to beat good press corners outside.
Speed –Has build-up speed more than initial acceleration. Takes 5-10 yards to get strides opened up in the open field but gallops with a ton of space per stride to sustain separation and stack cornerbacks down the field when tasked with pressing vertically.
Competitive Toughness –Plays with an excellent fire. Releases off of the line with good urgency and the needed effort to avoid tipping defenders off of potential reads or play calls. Tough at the catch point to win the football and shows great effort on the boundary as a blocker.
Blocking Ability –Is a marriage of great effort, great length and good functional play strength. Often wins the positioning on second effort, will set his hands and adjust quickly to an altered route to the ball by sliding his feet and sustaining extended arms.
BEST TRAIT – Vertical Receiving
WORST TRAIT – Change of Direction Skills
BEST FILM – Baylor (2018)
WORST FILM – Oklahoma State (2017)
RED FLAGS – None
David Sills V projects as a potential X-receiver in the NFL. At West Virginia, Sills has been granted a lot of isolated routes and free releases. Those will need to be accounted for in looking to maximize Sills. Size and high point ability have the potential to be indefensible in one on one reps. Sills projects best into a vertical passing system, he isn’t necessarily going to make a lot of noise running routes in the shallow areas of the field.
PROS: Releases against press coverage well with active feet and solid lateral agility. Does a good job fighting pressure and fighting through physicality at the line of scrimmage. Innate understanding of coverages stemming from his quarterback background. Processes defenses quickly and can threaten the leverage of defensive backs no matter the technique being played against him. Does a good job of selling routes with his eyes, and pumping his arms through breaks as a means to accelerate. Settles and find voids in zone coverage well, especially up the seam and over the middle. Wins inside with ease when necessary which allows him to produce well in the redzone and against man coverage. Excellent downfield production and developed chemistry with quarterback Will Grier.
Uses that agility to be a slippery runner that can glide by potential tacklers. Turns into a runner immediately after the catch, picking up yards with solid contact balance. Has shown the toughness to go over the middle and make plays through contact. There are flashes of dominant body control where he high points the football above the rim. Progressing in his consistency in the ways he extends back towards the football. When he is able to climb the ladder, one of the better jump ball receivers in the class.
Has shown solid effort as a blocker, occasionally working through the whistle and taking multiple shots at the defensive back.
CONS: Somewhat inconsistent hands with too many drops and can struggle to adjust to off-target throws. Hand placement comes and goes, too often looking to cradle a pass that is at pec-level. Though there are flashes of body control, it is too inconsistent and he needs to do a better job of always flipping his hips towards the flight of the ball. Will let the ball come into his body with too much regularity, especially while operating over the middle. Tracking of the football seems rather inconsistent. When he doesn’t release immediately at the line of scrimmage, he can get ridden in his route stems. Realistically, a good portion of his intermediate production comes from being schemed open or selling blocks before snapping into his routes.
Route tree is limited and will mostly runs quick screens and hitches as apart of West Virginia’s RPO packages. Can hop into his breaks and telegraphs by leaning into them with poor eye discipline, peaking at the quarterback rather than keeping them downfield. Has more of a slender build, without overly powerful strength. Can lack overarching strength as a blocker, as well as whiff in space.