With the NFL season beginning to wind down, we here at the Grill are going to start breaking down the prospects that will be in this year’s NFL draft. For more information on how are grading works, please visit the page linked above. This will be the first of many scouting reports to come. We will begin by profiling the major prospects in the draft and over time we will expand to cover some small school prospects and hopefully, come draft time, we will have about 100 profiles on prospects.
Name: Leonard Williams
Position: 4-3 Defensive Tackle, 3-4 Defensive End
Weight: 300 Pounds
2015 Stats: 80 Tackles, 7 Sacks, 1 INT
After the jump you will get a breakdown of Leonard Williams pro’s and con’s as well as our grade for Williams
Pros: Williams biggest strength is his combination of elite strength and incredible explosiveness and first step ability. He is excellent at shedding blocks and uses his hands violently. He has quick feet and has a developed into an elite run stopper on the defensive line. He has a remarkably effective bull rush and that is his go to pass rushing move. He has great length and speed and has great versatility. He has a ton of big game experience and has stepped up big in big games.
Cons: Some question his motor as it seems like he takes plays off at times. He doesn’t have a go to pass rushing move outside of the bull rush and needs to develop a consistent swim move. And at times, he gets blown off the line due to playing with high pad level
Our Take: Williams is an incredible defensive line prospect with a low bust potential. At worst, he should be a dominant run stopping defensive tackle with the ability to collapse the pocket through the bull rush. I believe he is best fit to play in a 43 system as a defensive tackle. If he develops a swim or rip move he could become an elite defensive tackle.
Final Grade: 95 out of 100
Williams grades out as the top defensive tackle in the draft by a decent margin. His polished game with low bust potential makes him a very safe pick with a super high upside. More consistent effort and a more refined pass rushing game would have made him in the rare elite company of a Suh or a McCoy but he is still an elite level prospect.
Possible Draft Spots: I could see Williams going anywhere from pick two to five to teams like Tennessee, Jacksonville, or Oakland, all who need defensive line help.
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