2021 NFL Draft Profile: RB Javonte Williams
The NFL is moving towards needing their running backs to occupy multiple roles in an offense. Not only do these players need to have solid vision in-between the tackles and the athletic traits to take advantage of the openings they find, but they also need to be receiving weapons out of the backfield.
Williams fits exactly what the NFL is looking for, and he’s going to make an immediate impact as soon as he steps onto the field. Williams has the skillset to contribute right away with a perfect blend of vision, contact balance, power, and receiving ability.
At North Carolina, Williams dominated the competition this past season. He put up 1,140 rushing yards, averaging 7.3 yards per attempt and 19 touchdowns on the ground. Additionally, Williams showed off his receiving chops by hauling in 25 receptions for 305 yards and another 3 touchdowns through the air. The production is evident – as is his overall talent – but what exactly does he bring to the table for an NFL team? Can he be a true fantasy football force?
These questions are answered here in our detailed scouting report for Javonte Williams:
Weight: 212 lbs.
Arms: 30 7/8
Hands: 9 3/8
40-Yard Dash: 4.55
Vertical Jump: 36
Broad Jump: 123
Bench: 22 Reps
Short Shuttle: 4.09
3-Cone Drill: 6.97
Skills Breakdown (out of 100)
Vision (77): One of the most well-rounded backs in this draft class. Fantastic vision in between the tackles and almost seems to know what gap a linebacker will occupy before they do. He displays a good balance of pausing and waiting for a gap to open or hit the hole immediately if he knows it’s going to be there.
Burst (76): Good vertical burst. Able to accelerate quickly and is near impossible to bring down once he has momentum. However, he struggles when asked to go horizontal and then accelerate. This might be the one major “flaw” in his game that if he can fix this and learn how to explode vertically from a stopped horizontal jump, he might become one of the best backs in the league.
Change of Direction (73): He’s able to change direction horizontally well if he’s in the open field. However, when he’s asked to change direction in small spaces, he struggles to accelerate again, and the windows close.
Power (79): Incredible power for a back of his size. He constantly embraces contact and bounces off of tacklers. He plays with a low center of gravity and lower pad level, making it impossible for defenders to bring him down on the first contact.
Speed (76): Possesses good top-end speed. He won’t blow people away at the Combine, but he has more than enough top-end speed to succeed in the NFL. Unlikely that he’ll ever break away any 60+ yard runs due to just his speed, but he can break away and pick up chunk gains.
Contact Balance (83): Almost unbelievable contact balance. If a defender can bring him down on first contact, they deserve an award. He is consistently able to keep his feet under him and continue on no matter what obstacle is in his way.
Pass Catching (76): Excellent pass-catcher out of the backfield. Utilized heavily in this fashion at North Carolina and succeeded in this role. Mismatch on linebackers running routes of the backfield.
Pass Protection (74): Good in pass protection as well. Able to identify his man quickly and not afraid to step in and embrace contact.
Insane. Insane. Insane. pic.twitter.com/k97Y3wawNQ
– Kyle Yates (@KyleYNFL) January 6, 2021
– Ray G ???? (@RayGQue) January 7, 2021
They Said It
Projected Draft Range
With his talent level and skillset, Williams should be viewed as a Day 1 prospect. However, due to how the RB position is valued in the NFL, it’s more likely that Williams comes off the board in the 2nd round of the NFL Draft.
Ideal Fantasy Landing Spot
The Steelers have a clear need at RB, with players like Kalen Ballage, Anthony McFarland, and Benny Snell currently on the roster. Williams would be able to step in and handle a significant workload for this team that wants to get back to running the football and taking some pressure off Big Ben.
At nearly the same size, the similarities between Williams and David Montgomery are too hard to ignore. Both players display outstanding contact balance and have a tremendous capability of breaking tackles. Each player is a capable receiver in their own right, but Williams might have an extra gear once he finds the open field. Williams could easily step onto the field and handle the type of workload Montgomery has seen for Chicago in his first two seasons.
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