From first glance, New York Jets first-round pick Quinnen Williams looks like a big baby with braces, but on the football field, he was one of the most dynamic and devastating interior defenders at the collegiate level.
His immense force and footwork only hit on two of his strengths, and he’s expected to dominate at the next level give the success he enjoyed in 2018. Totalling 48 solo tackles, 19.5 for a loss and 8.0 sacks, Williams isn’t only primed to be a killer with the Jets, he’s expected to be one.
At this point in time, though, Williams is holding out, waiting to sign his rookie contract and get the best deal possible from his new club. The Jets originally planned to bring him and finalize the contract, which would guarantee his presence for training camp, but he didn’t get on the flight.
Certainly, not the best way to start your career as a rookie, but all will come around and pass over.
The #Jets rookies report today and No. 3 overall pick DL Quinnen Williams is still unsigned. The team planned for him to fly in Thursday, but he was not on the flight. Similar to last year with Sam Darnold, NYJ’s first rounder may not report with his teammates.
— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) July 19, 2019
While NFL.com graded Williams has a potential Pro-Bowl player in their pre-draft analysis, there will be hurdles he has to face before reaching his potential.
Some of the issues include keeping his weight up, his physical attributes don’t stand out, not as effective against down-hill runners, and ultimately undersized. His speed and quickness masked those deficiencies well with Alabama, but they will stand out at the professional level.
I don’t imagine them hindering his abilities, considering the dynamic defensive scheme Gregg Williams enjoys, but working around his lack of size will be difficult at times. When he’s expected to burst through double teams and wreak havoc in the trenches, he will disappear in his rookie season. The experience from his first season will help him refine his game and develop into the player he’s capable of being, but in the meantime, joining his teammates and signing his rookie-deal should be the priority.