WR Mike Williams, 6’4 218 Clemson
What He Does Well
Williams displays the ability to win at the catch point either out jumping defenders or shielding them with his body. At 6’4 220lbs Williams has good body control adjusting to the ball in the air and able to make tough catches. Williams is a hands catcher who can pluck the ball out of the air while having the strong hands to hold through contact. Has the knowledge how to set up routes using varied speeds, acceleration and body lean to create enough separation. Williams does show the ability to find soft spots against zone.
— NFL Draft Geek (@NFLDraftGeek) March 28, 2017
What He Lacks
Despite a solid 40 time (4.49) Williams is not a burner and lacks explosion off the line or in and out of breaks, tending to be a one speed runner too often. Due to a lack of suddenness Williams is not a refined route runner often rounding off routes and struggling to create separation on a regular basis. Williams has good hands but will have concentration drops too often for a player of his stature. While tape shows the ability to attack the ball in the air his leaping drills at the Combine were only average compared to his peers. Williams will struggle to get off press coverage which can throw off his route timing. A neck injury cost him all of 2015 and it may be a concern to some teams.
In the age of big basketball type receivers Clemson’s Mike Williams continues that trend. After a neck injury in the first game of his sophomore season Williams bounced back for a dominant 2016 season accumulating 1,361 yards and 11 touchdowns. Williams was the go to receiver for Deshaun Watson providing a big bodied receiver who he often threw the ball up and let Williams go get the ball. The ability to win at the catch point allowed Williams to take over games including the 2016 National Championship Game providing big plays down the field helping set up the go ahead touchdown. Because Williams lacks explosion and quickness he’ll have to play in the NFL as a contested catcher winning in traffic. Possessing good body control to adjust in the air to off target throws along with the ability to track the ball well. Williams will need to get stronger as press coverage has given him fits in the past and should allow him to improve as a pass catcher too. Number one receivers are those who can win on third down and in the redzone, due to Williams ability to excel at the catch point and his baseline athletic ability he fits that role. Williams could go as high as the Titans with the 5th overall pick, but it would be a surprise to see him fall past pick 18 which is the Titans additional first round pick.
Pro Comparison: Alshon Jeffery