Deep into round 6 of the 2016 NFL draft, New England used their 208th pick to select linebacker Kamu Grugier-Hill out of Eastern Illinois.
Standing at 6-foot-2, 208 pounds, Grugier-Hill is considered to be a hybrid linebacker/safety. He had an impressive pro day combine, running a 4.45 40-yard dash and putting up a 38.5-inch vertical jump. During Kamu’s last season at Eastern Illinois he had 70 tackles, 16.5 tackles for loss and 6.5 sacks in 10 games as a senior. He also had an interception and three fumble recoveries. Grugier-Hill was also named first team All-Ohio Valley Conference and named OVC Defensive Player of the Week.
Throughout Grugier-Hill’s college career he gradually made a name for himself. During Kamu’s junior year he played in all 12 games making 11 starts. He also led his team in tackles finishing the season with 97 which ranked 10th in the OVC first team All-Ohio Valley Conference and had 47 solo tackles. In 2013 during his sophomore year he had played in all 14 games, making five starts in the early part of the season, and made 43 tackles for the year. His freshman year he played in all 12 games as a linebacker and made his first career start against UT Martin.
As a linebacker/safety, Kamu could have a lot to offer the Patriots if he can find a way to earn a spot on New England’s 53-man roster. He certainly has the versatility that the Patriots covet. According to NFL.com, Kamu is an “explosive, quick-twitch athlete” and says he “has superior chase speed and burst to the ball carrier.” However, for Kamu to be successful on the NFL level he will likely have to first excel on special teams and eventually carve out a role on the defensive side of the ball. Grugier-Hill is joining fellow college team mate, quarterback, Jimmy Garappolo in New England.