Scouting Report Standing at just 5'11", he's considered undersized by many. However, he's stout, he's a sure tackler, and he's superb against the run. He is very good at shedding blocks and locating the ball carrier. And He's also good in space vs. the pass and does a good job of diagnosing lays as they develop.
BigEasyTider's Take Love Hamilton for the intangibles he brings to the table, notably his leadership ability and his overall intelligence (very smart kid who was valedictorian of his HS class). Also brings a strong work ethic and was a productive player on the prep level.
The concern? He is actually a fairly limited player physically. He's got a very short frame and isn't exactly big enough to be an interior clogger at linebacker. Lateral movement is good, but he's not going to be blow anyone away with athleticism either. Physically, in a lot of ways he reminds me of Petey Smith from a few years back, though he's a bit lighter and moves a bit better.
Hamilton should play early on special teams and at ILB (the latter being just because we are something thin at Mike and Will), but I'm not sure exactly what the ceiling is here. I do think he'll contribute, and he'll be an asset in a lot of ways, but I don't necessarily see the physical skill set here to truly become a star.
runtheoption22's Take On NSD, this is where I felt he would fit in our class rankings. The size is a negative. But, when you are as smart as he is, sometimes size takes a backseat to being the right spot every single time. You know CNS loves cerebral kids, especially from an ILB position. SDH may make noise sooner, rather than later.
WMack4Bama's Take Named after Alabama legend Shaun Alexander and pointing to CJ Mosley as his idol and role model, Hamilton has put himself in good company. Possessing the same high character as Alexander and the film room addiction as Mosley, Hamilton will be a welcomed addition the locker room.
He has good range, sideline to sideline. His relatively low center of gravity gives him very good body balance, and he uses his hands very well to shed blocks and find the ball carrier. His lateral quickness is stellar. His size and skill set remind me a lot of former NFL great Zach Thomas of the Miami Dolphins. Thomas was also listed at 5'11" (and that was generous), but he played like a giant. Hamilton has that written all over him.
Hamilton probably won't start this season (although he was running with the 1s alongside Reggie Rangland as recently as today (8/6/14)), but he'll play a lot based on a number of factors. (1) He enrolled early [he's good friends with Dee Milliner, and he witnessed how Milliner's early enrollment contributed to him having an immediate impact], (2) he'll at the very least, play special teams, and (3) the lack of depth at the ILB that Coach Smart mentioned over the weekend. Behind DePriest, Ragland, and Foster, Hamilton is pretty much it, although others have shuffled in and out of there. Hamilton is a more natural fit.
I think he'll be a leader on this defense no later than his junior season (possibly sooner) and he'll have a highly productive career.