http://hamptonroads.com/2011/04/vt-foot ... -nike-deal
“We’re feeling really optimistic,” Williams’ agent, Malik Shareef, said Monday night. “We’re still a little unsure about where exactly he’ll end up, but we’ve spoken to over half of the 32 teams in the NFL. He’s worked out for five teams and visited another five teams. A lot of teams are showing serious interest. We believe he could go from the late first round to the early second.”
Shareef said he doesn’t expect Williams to fall lower than the second round, mentioning the trio of first-round running backs in 2010 – C.J. Spiller at No. 9, Ryan Mathews at No. 12 and Jahvid Best at No. 30 – saying, “I hate to be biased, but they’re not better than Ryan Williams.” Shareef also believes that, along with the positive feedback he’s getting from NFL teams, the invite to New York and the new Nike endorsement deal are pointing to good news in the draft.
“Being the first running back to get a deal from Nike is big,” Shareef said. “Pretty much everybody that has signed a deal so far, those are all top-10 guys. For Ryan Williams to get his own endorsement deal, it says a lot about his talent. Nike takes an elite class of athlete, so I guess they felt real secure in what Ryan can do. Hopefully that all translates to one of these 32 teams picking him Thursday in the first round. If not, we’ll go second round and tear it up and make everyone sorry they didn’t get him earlier.”