Most running backs playing in the WAC don’t have to worry about one NFL-caliber running back keeping them off the field, much less two. But Williams had to sit behind Seattle fourth-round pick Robert Turbin and Tampa Bay Buccaneers seventh-round selection Michael Smith for most of his career with the Aggies, excelling on special teams and taking advantage of a handful of carries each game.
An all-state dual-threat high school quarterback from Las Vegas (2,000 rush yards, 700 passing as a senior), Williams earned the primary kick returner job as a true freshman, averaging over 25 yards a pop as the nation’s top first-year player in that category. He increased that average in 2010 (27.2 yards per attempt) while ranking sixth in the FBS with 170.2 all-purpose yards a game; he also started five games at running back that year (81-451, 4 TD rushing, 12-110 receiving). Williams’ kick return yardage total decreased in 2011 (36-817), but he averaged a stout 6.7 yards per rush (81-542) with three scores as a reserve behind Turbin and Smith. As the lead back in his senior year, Williams had 218 carries for 1,512 yards and 15 touchdowns. As a receiver, he also caught 45 passes for 697 yards and another five scores.
Short back, with a more compact build. Keeps ball high and tight. Not afraid to run between the tackles. Used out wide in five receiver sets, understands to sit in soft areas as a receiver. Adequate pass-catcher out of the backfield, contorts body to adjust to poor throws. Looks to cut upfield on sideline runs. A veering and weaving kind of runner, always wants to be going forward. Very reliable to catch the target on short routes, even when hit immediately. Even used along the sideline on a wheel route, adjusts to back shoulder. Makes opposition miss when up to full speed. Has enough breakaway speed, big runs come when drifting to the sideline. Can take a screen to the end zone if given a lane due to little wasted movement.
Lacks ideal size for a starting NFL back. Does not explode out of his stance quickly, builds up speed. Not overly exaggerated or quick on angle route out of the backfield. Lacks noteworthy open field moves, prefers to be subtle in space. Upfield cuts take multiple steps rather than one, decisive step. Vision is a question mark, appears to run to designed lane without thought of altering his path. Not much of a help when chipping in pass protection. In fact, too often the attempted block is whiffed. Consistently taken down by the first defender, doesn't fall forward. Fumbles when hit after immediately taking the handoff.
Stuck behind two running backs drafted last April (Robert Turbin, Michael Smith), Williams patiently waited for 2012 to get his chance as the Aggies’ top backfield threat. Williams seized his opportunity with a strong senior season that included 20 total touchdowns. Williams is unlikely to see many carries in the NFL like Turbin and Smith potentially will, but he's a more versatile player than either one of them. Williams could be drafted late based upon his pass catching and kick return ability.
Future Hall of Famer
A once-in-a-generation type prospect who could change how his position is played
An impact player with the ability/intangibles to become a Pro Bowl player. Expect to start immediately except in a unique situation (i.e. behind a veteran starter).
A quality player who will contribute to the team early on and is expected to develop into a starter. A reliable player who brings value to the position.
A prospect with the ability to make team as a backup/role player. Needs to be a special teams contributor at applicable positions. Players in the high range of this category might have long-term potential.
A player with solid measurables, intangibles, college achievements, or a developing skill that warrants an opportunity in an NFL camp. In the right situation, he could earn a place on a 53-man roster, but most likely will be a practice squad player or a camp body.