Kyle Hamilton, Safety, Notre Dame: 2022 NFL Draft Scouting Report

Fighting Irish S Kyle Hamilton. (Photo by Scott Taetsch/Getty Images)
Fighting Irish S Kyle Hamilton. (Photo by Scott Taetsch/Getty Images) /

Notre Dame safety Kyle Hamilton will be a difference maker right away in the NFL. Is he the best player in the 2022 NFL Draft?

Name: Kyle Hamilton

Position: Safety

School: Notre Dame

Height: 6’4″

Weight: 218 pounds


Kyle Hamilton went to Marist School in Georgia, and was quickly on the national radar, receiving All-Region and Special Teams Player of the Year awards by the Atlanta Journal Constitution in 2018. The consensus had him as a top 30 player from Georgia and a top 20 safety in the 2018 recruiting class, and got to participate in the All-American game in San Antonio, Texas. Hamilton ultimately chose Notre Dame.

Hamilton played in all 13 games as a freshman, and landed on the freshman All-American team done by The Athletic. He racked up numerous All-American awards after that, as well as a Bednarik Semifinalist as a sophomore. Hamilton was a finalist the following year, along with a Thorpe Award Semifinalist. He ended up with 138 total tackles, 16 passes defensed, eight interceptions, and 7.5 tackles for loss in his Fighting Irish career, and unfortunately didn’t get to finish his junior season due to injury.

2022 NFL Draft Scouting Report


The first thing that jumps out on film for Kyle Hamilton (besides the obviously elite size at 6’4″) is the versatility he brings as a safety. The Fighting Irish moved Hamilton all over the place in their defense, from working in single high, to operating in the box, covering receivers/tight ends in the slot, and roaming over the middle of the field in a “robber” role. That rare versatility will be important for teams in the 2022 NFL Draft.

Hamilton brings limitless range as well. He can cover ground quickly with long strides, burst, and explosion and has impressive closing speed to get to the football or his assignment when deep in coverage. When Hamilton is working downhill in the alley, the elite click/close skills are evident. He does blitz from time to time, and gets home quickly when doing so.

Hamilton is one of the best tacklers in the 2022 NFL Draft. When wrapping up, he stays patient in space, and commits when necessary, using his size and wingspan to his advantage. His technique is impressive and there aren’t missed tackles showing up anywhere on tape.

In coverage, Hamilton is very assignment-oriented. The reason there aren’t an insane amount of splash plays for such an elite prospect is because Hamilton is rarely out of position and where he needs to be in coverage, which doesn’t draw many targets.

When he’s lined up in man coverage, Hamilton, he’s big and physical enough to handle tight ends and quick and flexible enough to handle shiftier slot receivers. He stays physical at the line of scrimmage and at the top of routes, along with the catch point. His wingspan helps him stay in passing windows even when trailing in coverage. His zone feel is outstanding, and he reads the quarterback’s eyes really well when in short and intermediate zones.

The mental processing with Hamilton is also excellent. Whether it’s reading plays quickly from deep and closing downhill in a flash, or reading a route combination and getting into the intermediate window, Hamilton processes quickly with what’s going on in front of him and quickly gets to where he needs to be.

Lastly, the ball skills are impressive. His hand-eye coordination is great to handle tip drills, and he’s usually in a position to make a good play on the ball, often finishing with reliable hands. The ball production on tape matches that of the stat sheet.


The weaknesses are really few and far-between with Kyle Hamilton, which is why many have him as the top player in the 2022 NFL Draft. There are a couple instances of quarterbacks moving him with good eyes where he can’t quite recover in time. He also takes a flat angle from deep when defending perimeter runs, which can easily be corrected.

Final Thoughts/Fits

There’s a reason that some are giving Kyle Hamilton the “generational” tag in the 2022 NFL Draft. It’s perhaps because he looks like the clear top player in the class, but the rare blend of size, processing, versatility, production, and reliability make this a possibility. This writer probably won’t throw in that term, but the word “elite” definitely applies here. With no real weaknesses on tape, Hamilton should be a top 10 pick regardless of positional value because of the instant impact he can bring.

Several teams in the top 10 should consider Hamilton. The Jets and Giants both have two selections in the top 10 of the 2022 NFL Draft, and one could be to select Hamilton. The Falcons and Panthers have put resources into the secondary in past drafts, but it would still be hard to pass on Hamilton. The Texans could opt to go Hamilton as well, and it feels like Washington would be as far as he could possibly fall.


Kyle Hamilton brings elite size, ball skills, and versatility to the table as a 2022 NFL Draft prospect, and should make a serious impact in year one for a franchise.