Prospect: Jesse Williams, DT, AlabamaJesse Williams

Height: 6’3⅜”

Weight: 323 lb.

Athleticism:

  • Severe lack of speed in the open field which means he doesn’t get in on a high percentage of plays
  • Has adequate foot quickness to move laterally down the line and gets off the snap well enough
  • Not an every down defender for the Crimson Tide defense and still wore down a bit at the end of games, has some stamina issues
  • Wide framed defensive tackle who carries his weight quite well, impressive strength throughout

Intelligence/Effort:

  • Sufficient motor to pursue the ball and relentlessness rushing the passer
  • Vast experience at both nose tackle and 5 technique positions in Alabama’s 3-4, also spotlights as a lead blocker in the offense’s heavy package
  • Has only been playing football since he was 15, with only two years of experience at Alabama
  • Occasionally gets too impatient after standing up a blocker when isolated with the running back and guesses a gap instead of reading
  • Leverages the ball well as a pass rusher, always knows where the ball is and maintains gap discipline as a result

Pass Rush:

  • Strong bullrush to press the pocket, generates power from his lower half well
  • Gives strong punches as a rusher with a fantastic club to knock pass blockers off balance
  • Has value as a batter of passes but leaves his feet too often to do so, limits pass rush efficiency with his attempts
  • Speed rush entirely negligible as well as any ability to work in moves with his power rush
  • Mirrors mobile quarterbacks well and understands his limitations

Run Support:

  • Can move blockers down the line and into running lanes with immense lower body strength and hand control
  • Sheds blocks with heavy hands and can make plays in the backfield
  • Tremendous anchor ability against a double team with tenacity to work off of multiple blockers
  • Engages multiple blockers with his wide frame and with hand usage, keeps linebackers clean very well
  • Shows quick feet and recognition skills to spin off of blocks and back into the flow of plays
  • Limited range down the line after disengaging from blockers, marginal burst to close
  • Struggles to finish plays in space due to lack of range, lots of “almost” tackles

Technique:

  • Plays with proper pad level every snap, very rarely loses a leverage battle at the point of attack
  • Occasionally comes off the ball too low in short yardage and ends up on the ground due to loss of balance
  • Fires his hands quickly and extends well to create functional space, strong upper body

Overall:

Jesse Williams was the anchor of the nation’s best defense for the last two years running.  The scary part is that he’s really still learning the intricacies of the game.  The Australian initially signed with Hawaii but went the junior college route when it was discovered he didn’t qualify academically.  After transferring to Alabama, he became an immediate contributor.  Williams plied his trade as a 5 technique primarily as a junior before shifting inside to the nose tackle position as a senior.  He’s certainly not going to blow you away athletically, but he has a lot going for him regardless.  Williams is a wide bodied nose tackle with natural strength in spades.  He anchors at the point of attack against double teams in a way that translates immediately to the NFL.  He’s a handful for any blocker when he has them isolated in one on one situations as well.  His ability to control blockers with strong hands is nearly unmatched among defensive tackle prospects.  For any team in need of a two gap tackle, whether it be a 4-3 or 3-4 scheme, Jesse Williams is your guy.  He has top 20 talent.

Originally published at DetroitLions.com: Jesse Williams Scouting Report

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