Kasen Williams enters the 2015 NFL Draft after a college career that at one time looked promising, but took a downturn in production the last two years. In 2012, Williams was named Honorable Mention All-Pac 12, but has failed to reach the same level of production. He totaled 77 receptions for 878 yards and 6 TDs. Since then, he’s managed to haul in 49 catches for 610 yards and 3 TDs in the last two years combined. In 2014, he managed only 20 receptions for 189 yards and 2 scores, despite playing in all 14 games. Williams suffered a significant injury in 2013, breaking his fibula as well as damaging ligaments in his foot. Physically, Williams is a nice, big-bodied guy who is a quarterback-friendly target. At 220(+) lbs, Williams is a tough assignment for the smaller corner. Athletically, Williams displays better than expected quickness and burst into his route. He’s a coordinated guy who uses a combination of his physical stature (physical hand play, strong upper body) and quickness to beat press coverage. Williams is a bit tight in his hips, though, which is revealed in his need to gear down when digging into and exploding out of his breaks. His size an initial quickness creates some nice separation, but DBs can recover as a result of his lacking overall flexibility. Williams displays a sound set of hands when catching the football as well as very good body control when adjusting to a poorly thrown ball or the back shoulder pass. He also has a decent understanding of the boundary; he knows where he is at all times and uses his feet well along the sideline. Williams doesn’t present as a player that will run by a corner. His film doesn’t suggest that kind of long speed. He does, however, have a good combination of size and AA to project as a chain mover and potential red zone target in the NFL. Williams gives good effort in the run game and was a generally reliable open-field blocker for the running back.
BOTTOM LINE: Kasen Williams looked like he was going to be a first-round pick early on in his collegiate career. His failure to produce on the level that he did in 2012 is not solely because of his play, as he did have a significant injury that interrupted his overall development. Nonetheless, his lack of production is a concern. From a purely physical and athletic standpoint, Williams is a draftable player who has the potential to make plays from a reserve capacity on Sundays. He will need an impressive showing in the pre-Draft process to enhance his value above a late-Day 3 pick at best.
GRADE: 5.3 (7th Round – PFA)
-Submitted by Bryan Perez (@FirstRoundGrade)