NFL Hot Press






Teams Project Jonah Williams in Mid- to Late Round 1

Updated Dec. 20, 2018
By Charlie Campbell. Follow Charlie on Twitter @draftcampbell.

Prior to and during the 2018 college football season, some in the media have projected Alabama left tackle Jonah Williams to be a high first-round pick. Williams has been a mainstay on the Crimson Tide offensive line over the past few years and a steady blocker in both phases to help them produce the best offense they've had during the Nick Saban era. In speaking to sources at five different NFL teams, four of them give graded Williams as a late first-round pick, and some of those noted discussion about Williams switching positions in the NFL.

All of the team sources expected Williams to be a first-round pick, with four of the five giving him that grade. The remaining team had graded him for Day 2. Even though most graded him as a late first-rounder, they thought he could go higher because this is a weak offensive line draft class and there are plenty of teams that need help up front. One national scout estimated Williams' range being from No. 15-30, and others were in agreement with that.

The area of disagreement about Williams came in his NFL position. Two teams felt Williams should move inside to guard. One said he should move to right tackle, and one said he could stay at left tackle. Interestingly, one director of college scouting said they thought Williams should play center in the NFL. That director said that the Alabama coaches have told some pro evaluators that they wanted to play Williams at center because they thought that could be his most effective position, but they had to play him at left tackle to field their best starting offensive line.

Williams is not expected to be a workout warrior leading up to the 2019 NFL Draft. A few evaluators felt that Williams is not a great athlete and not powerful, so the pre-draft workouts won't completely illustrate his strengths. Sources from across the teams compliment his intelligence and technique. Those are some of the attributes that they feel will help him in a position change for playing guard, right tackle, or center.

In the 2019 NFL Draft, Williams is expected to be selected on the opening night, but the position announced with that selection will be a source of intrigue around the league.







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