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WATCH: Erick Hallett II Makes Key Interception for Jaguars



Former Pitt defensive back Erick Hallett II

Former Pitt defensive back Erick Hallett II made a key interception for the Jacksonville Jaguars against the Miami Dolphins Saturday night in their final preseason game.

Dolphins quarterback Skylar Thompson, on the run, tried to pass it to wide receiver Cedrick Wilson Jr., who had no defender on him. The ball sailed over Wilson, who only got finger tips to it. That touch slowed the ball down and it fell right into the hands of Hallett, who planted his left foot and dragged his right foot so that he would stay in bounds to complete the interception.

Miami chose to challenge the play, but replay showed that Hallett intercepted it and kept both feet in bounds to make it official.

The Jaguars selected Hallett in the Sixth Round and the No. 208 pick in the 2023 NFL Draft. He is the first player from Pitt that the Jaguars ever drafted, since the organization started playing in 1995.

In his first NFL preseason game, he made one tackle in the 28-13 win over the Dallas Cowboys on Aug. 12. Hallett stepped up his performance last Saturday, Aug. 19 against the Detroit Lions, making four total tackles, two solo.

Hallett is the latest in a long line of Pitt defensive backs that are a part of the NFL. This includes Damar Hamlin and Dane Jackson on the Buffalo Bills, Damarri Mathis on the Denver Broncos, Jason Pinnock on the New York Giants, Avonte Maddox on the Philadelphia Eagles and Jordan Whitehead on the New York Jets.

Erick Hallett II came to Pitt as a three-star safety out of Cypress, Texas and got better and better each season — breaking out in 2022 with an All-American campaign.

He was a playmaker in the 2022 Pitt defense, recording a team-high six turnovers. His three interceptions and three fumble recoveries (which led the ACC) demonstrated his ability to force mistakes.

This was especially true when he earned MVP honors for the 2021 ACC championship game, picking off Wake Forest quarterback Sam Hartman twice, and he chose to end his career at Pitt with a win in the Sun Bowl over UCLA — one of the few senior draftees who didn’t opt out.

In his Pitt career, he recorded 158 tackles, 109 solo, 7.5 tackles for loss, seven interceptions (including one returned for a touchdown), 22 pass breakups, four forced fumbles and five recoveries.

Sandy Schall, Coldwell Banker
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