2021 NFL Draft Prospects: Javonte Williams

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Today we are analyzing Javonte Williams, who combined with Michael Carter to form a very dangerous running back duo at North Carolina. Williams, who is 5’10” 220 lbs., was named Second-Team All-ACC and Second-Team All-American in 2020.

Strengths: Williams is a battering ram between the tackles. He runs with great power, leg drive, and contact balance, making him an absolute tackle-breaking machine. This allows him to often get positive yardage in situations most running backs would not. Williams also has a good burst through the hole and decent quickness to compliment his powerful profile. He is a smooth and fluid runner, with loose hips that allow him to string together cuts and change direction rather easily. Williams has good vision and patience, letting blocks develop in front of him and selecting the right running lane. Williams is a capable receiver, displaying soft hands. Williams is said to have great character, leadership, and work ethic. 

Weaknesses: Despite having a good burst, Williams is not the most dynamic athlete, and is most notably lacking in speed. He does not possess much breakaway ability and can be caught from behind. His receiving potential is also capped as a result of his athletic profile. In pass protection, Williams is willing but needs better technique, as his hand placement is often too wide. He does not currently have the ability to sustain blocks and properly protect his quarterback on a consistent basis. 

Bottom Line: Williams possesses the best contact balance in the class, and is very skilled at breaking tackles as a downhill runner who also shows a nice burst through the hole. Williams is a solid athlete overall but lacks breakaway speed and the real dynamic ability to be a top-level receiver out of the backfield. Williams’s combination of power and burst will allow him to be a high quality starting running back in the NFL.

Draft Projection: Round 2

Grade: 2.0

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