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Northwestern football 2017 National Signing Day profiles: Defensive lineman Sam Miller

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The early enrollee is one part of Northwestern’s heralded class of 2017 defensive linemen.

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Quick Hits

POSITION: Defensive Line

HEIGHT: 6-foot-3

WEIGHT: 260 pounds

HOMETOWN: Houston, Texas

HIGH SCHOOL: Stratford

247 COMPOSITE SCORE: .8817

NATIONAL RANKING: 387

POSITION RANKING: 29

STATE RANKING: 52

OTHER OFFERS: Indiana, Texas Tech, Colorado State, SMU, UCF, North Texas

MORE: 247 profile | Hudl | Twitter

Background

Sam Miller enrolled early at Northwestern and has already started working with the team. He is the brother of Class of 2016 recruit Alex Miller, who appeared in 12 games in 2016 at the same position as Sam. However, Sam has the higher recruiting ratings of the two, and his pass rushing ability should be a huge addition to the class of 2017.

Sam’s quickness on strong side of the defensive line is the first thing that you see when looking at his tape. He blows by his high school competition with strength and speed. He also looks like a strong run-stopper. The video even showed a snap he played at tight end, and he didn’t look half bad, so his quickness is definitely real. If he can develop his pass rushing skills to a Big Ten level, he could be a staple in this talented defensive line class.

Outlook

Unlike fellow early enrollee Trey Pugh, Miller is not coming with any injury concerns so far. As a point of comparison, Sam’s brother Alex did not get a redshirt year and made a minor but noticeable impact in the games he played. Thus, Miller will probably see some playing time next season barring injury as Northwestern looks to replace C.J. Robbins and Ifeadi Odenigbo. Miller could be a third-stringer for Jordan Thompson or Tyler Lancaster or play in sub-packages, and he should gradually work his way up the ranks if all goes according to plan.

As for his future prospects, it’s very easy to get excited for the defensive line group that Northwestern is bringing in. The top three recruits in the class all play on the defensive line, and Miller’s future will depend on how he fits in with Earnest Brown and Trevor Kent. All three have the pedigree to make an early impact, and Miller brings a certain type of quickness and strength to his position.