PROS: He has good speed to challenge defenses downfield. Has good hands. He's quick to turn upfield and is a capable runner after the catch able to make defenders miss. Does well on slants and screens. He's an effective blocker. Has nice body control, makes the catch in traffic, and not afraid to go over the middle. Does a nice job breaking off routes to help out a scrambling quarterback.
CONS: Will body catch at times and loses concentration. Needs to do a better job securing the ball after the catch before turning upfield. Inconsistent at times in terms of getting a good release off the line. Is an inconsistent blocker that doesn't always fully commit, blocking sideways so that he can look at the runner.
OVERVIEW: Williams has all the tools to be a successful No. 1 target at the next level. The problem is he decided to leave the team at the beginning of November. Reportedly, he was a passenger in a car with teammates out after curfew where they were involved in a car accident where they were rear-ended by a tractor-trailer truck. And rather than accept a suspension, he opted to quit the team. He also missed all of the 2008 season due to academic reasons.
NFL FORECAST: Character. That's really it. And teams will have to get to the bottom of whether Williams really has the work ethic and maturity to succeed in the NFL. He's a gifted receiver and one of the more NFL ready in this year's class. As far as upside goes, he can be a No. 1 target. He has the range to be a factor as a possession wideout or deep threat. His size and speed can make him a game-breaker. And he seems to possess most of the little details to his game to think that he will be a better rookie than most, and that he can be a decent rookie starter. He really needs a mentor at the next level and should go to a team that already has a strong locker room. If he was drafted by the Patriots and Randy Moss does for Williams what Cris Carter did for Moss, then Tom Brady is probably going to be adding some Super Bowl rings to his collection before all is said and done. But if he goes to a team where he's going to have to step in the mantle as the go-to option, then I'm not at all confident he has the maturity to handle that. While he's a player that can fit in any offense, he's not a player that will fit on every team.
ATL FORECAST: Atlanta would be one of those teams where Williams could fit and succeed. Because in Roddy White he could have a mentor because Roddy has been through the ups and downs as a young NFL receiver. Throw in having strong locker room guys like Matt Ryan and Tony Gonzalez to keep him straight from the start, then a humble Williams could integrate well into the Falcons locker room. And if that was the case, I would expect him to surpass Jenkins as the starter by the end of his second season. And while two years from now he may not be as polished as Jenkins is, I think his playmaking ability will be too much to hold him back as a third or fourth option. So his success in Atlanta would largely depend on whether Williams has humbled himself and truly "gets it" as they say and that he has only uncovered the tip of the iceberg in terms of what he can do in this sport. But without spending a long time in a face to face interaction with Williams, there really is no reason to believe that is the case.
VALUE: Williams has Top 20 talent, but because of his maturity and character issues, he shouldn't go in the Top 50. I would roll the dice on him in the late second possibly, particularly if I was a playoff team like the Patriots who already have a veteran that could mentor him. But for everybody else, I wouldn't chance him until the third round.
1-poor, 2-weak, 3-above average, 4-very good, 5-elite
AFTER CATCH: 4.0
BODY CONTROL: 3.5
"Vincere scis, Hannibal, victoria uti nescis" -- Maharbal, 216 B.C.E.