2017 NFL Draft
Scouting Report
Prospect:  Mike Williams


School:          Clemson
Ht:  6'-3"       Wt:  225
Eligibility:      JR
Uniform:       #7
Position:      WR

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It was tough to watch Williams go down with that neck injury in 2015. It was a scary moment, and an unfortunate one considering he was looking to have a breakout year. In 2016, he has returned to be Deshaun Watson's favorite, and most reliable target. The first thing I wanted to see was a player that wasn't hesitant or timid, considering the injury and the violent nature of the game. Thus far, he has looked every bit the player he was prior to the injury, and I think it is safe to say the injury is behind him.

Williams has been force-fed the ball thus far in his fourth year. They work him a lot on the perimeter, and love to throw him the fade. Whether it is on the back shoulder or leading him down the field, they like to give him an opportunity to win in man-to-man situations. Williams uses his big body and ability to go up and compete for the ball to justify this confidence his team has. He does a good job of attacking the ball at its highest point and wins his fair share.

He is also tough over the middle which will only help him as a prospect. With that size, and his willingness to extend his hands to the football, he could become a prime candidate for those slant and dig routes. He plays physical and doesn't get bumped off his route by smaller defenders. He could also become a factor as a blocker in the run game.

I have two major concerns with him at the next level. The first is his ability to separate. For starters, he doesn't explode off the snap forcing corners out of their back pedal. When you eat up that cushion quickly, it puts the corner in a difficult position to stay in their comfort zone. Secondly, when he does cut or break down, he doesn't explode out of it. That initial separation is important for any receiver but more vital for possession receivers. It allows them to position themselves between the throw and the defender, making it difficult to keep them from making the play. Without good deep speed, he is going to have to learn to separate out of his breaks better.

My other concern is his focus. He has very good hands, but there are times when he just doesn't make catches he should. A lot of people would blame his hands on this, but I think it is more because of his focus. Whether taking his eyes off the ball or letting his mind wonder to what he is going to do next or what is happening around him, he has to clean this up if he wants to be that reliable third-down target.

Overall, I don't think Williams has the skillset to be a number one target in most offenses, but I didn't think Keenan Allen did either. Still, he is a very similar player to Williams, and San Diego has made him a star in that spread system. They get Allen isolated in matchups he has the advantage in, and I think Williams could thrive in that same role. Even in a different scheme, a team is getting a competitor that pushes himself to be the best.

Compares to (Current NFL Player): Keenan Allen (San Diego Chargers)

- Big Receiver with long arms
- Attacks the ball in the air
- Plays physical and tough
- Solid hands
- Wins a lot of 50/50 balls

- Only above-average speed
- Doesn't separate well
- Occasionally has focus lapses

Austin Smith
October 1, 2016

1)   How a broken neck made Clemson's Mike Williams a more dangerous wide receiver   - SBNation.com
3)   Giants scout: Mike Williams 'should be playing on Sundays'    - Nfl.com
4)   Mike Williams Twitter
5)   Adoree Jackson Instagram

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