Daryl Williams, the senior offensive tackle for the Oklahoma Sooners, enters the 2015 NFL Draft after starting all 13 games at right tackle this past season. He was recognized as a First Team All-Big12 performer for his play. In 2013, Williams started 13 games (12 at right tackle, one at left tackle) and was named Second Team All-Conference. In 2012, Williams lined-up as a starter in 10 contests, missing three games due to a knee injury. In total, he tallied 37 career starts as a Sooner. Physically, Williams possesses ideal size for the tackle position. He has elite arm length, measuring in at 35″. His lower-half is perfectly built to anchor versus NFL defenders. Williams is an average athlete with average flexibility who is inconsistent when sitting into his stance; He tends to bend at the waist a bit, especially when he’s in the open field and trying to finish a block; He flails and lunges at the second-level defender too often. In the run game, Williams possesses a solid first step off the snap, can reach the second level in time to lead the play (see above about finishing), and possesses the kind of footwork needed to get around the defender and seal. He packs some power behind his pads, creating a good jolt on contact that freezes the defender. He has the necessary power and athletic baseline to play in both an in-line and ZBS rushing attack. In pass protection, Williams displays better than average quickness to the corner with coordinated footwork and range. His length is a huge asset, as he uses it to recover if initially beaten by speed as well as to bail himself out versus an athletic counter move. He’ll have to improve his initial punch a bit, as he tends to be too hesitant to unleash his hands at the snap. His hands are strong and powerful, but he’s simply too inconsistent with his overall punch and fit.
BOTTOM LINE: Daryl Williams is an experienced veteran at right tackle who projects as a starting-caliber player in the NFL. While he lacks elite athletic traits to suggest All-Pro potential, he has the kind of size, length and baseline athleticism to suggest above-average success as a starter. He didn’t look good on an island during drills at the 2015 Senior Bowl, and that is likely to drop his stock a bit. But on film, he plays with a tough, aggressive and intelligent style that teams will find appealing. His scheme diversity is an added plus, as his all-around skill set will make him a fit in either a ZBS or in-line power game while also offering the kind of talent in pass protection to help keep a starting quarterback upright. Daryl Williams won’t be the first tackle drafted, but he will have a long and reliable career as a solid starter on the right side for several years.
GRADE: 7.5 (Second Round)
-Submitted by Bryan Perez (@FirstRoundGrade)