Now that Quinnen Williams has been drafted by the New York Jets at the 2019 NFL Draft in Nashville, Tenn., here's a look at what fans need to know about the 6'3", 303-pound University of Alabama defensive tackle.
Williams was the No. 1 breakout player of the 2018 college football season. By midseason, he was the top concern for every offense facing an Alabama defense that was teeming with future NFL talent. He explodes off the ball, and is capable of simply beating the double-team block before it has even formed. He’s active and violent with his hands, and he’s exceedingly slippery rushing the passer inside, due to his flexibility, explosiveness and overall athleticism. When offensive linemen were able to get their hands on him, he showed the raw power to drive one, or sometimes two of them, back into the quarterback. A first-year starter who didn’t turn 21 until December, he often looked like a wily veteran on the field. He faced a torrent of double-teams last year, and even when he didn’t get home, he showed an incredible knack for locating the ball in the chaos. No one tripped up quarterbacks trying to escape the front of the pocket more often than Williams last year.
There aren’t a lot. As a one-year starter, opponents didn’t have that full offseason to prepare for what he brings and poke some holes in his game. He also might not be able to manhandle and drive back the NFL’s grown men at the point of attack like he did at the college level.
It’s difficult not to get excited about Williams’ potential at the next level. Aaron Donald comparisons are a little too lofty, but Williams is also the first player in a while who deserves to be mentioned in the same sentence as the Rams star. He’s going to wreck some games at the next level and has a chance to be an annual All-Pro candidate.