Leonard Williams NFL Draft Preview: Stock, Mock Drafts and Projections


Leonard Williams entered the draft process as one of the most highly-touted players on the board and remains a potential top five draft pick as the first round approaches on Thursday night.

RELATED: The 50 best draft picks to come out of USC

Why Leonard Williams will get drafted

Simply put, Williams is possibly the best player in the entire draft.

More to the point, the 6-5, 302 pound is a once-in-a-generation prospect and as close to a sure thing as you can get when it comes to the draft.

Considering Williams’ physical tools, the lineman has been projected to be a top draft pick since starting as a freshman at USC.

What Leonard Williams did at USC

Williams was a three-year starter and a two-time All-American at USC despite playing three different roles at two different positions in three different defenses.

As a Trojan, he notched 218 tackles, 36.5 tackles for loss including 21 sacks, five forced fumbles and two interceptions in 35 starts.

What the scouts are saying about Leonard Williams

On Sunday, Bob McGinn of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel ran a report that gave Williams the highest of praise.

In a poll of NFL executives, Williams was noted by most as the best player in the draft. McGinn quoted one who said “[Williams] is the most talented player on the defensive side of the ball. He’s an end and a 3-technique. He’s quick, strong and athletic.”

NFL.com’s Lance Zeirlein called him “enormously powerful” and projects him to be “a consistent Pro Bowler with a ceiling that goes even higher than that.”

One AFC scout said Williams is “fool-proof” and considers him the best defensive prospect “in a long, long time.”

Where Leonard Williams is going in Mock Drafts

  • Todd McShay (ESPN): Jacksonville Jaguars, 1st Round, 3rd overall
  • Mel Kiper (ESPN): Jacksonville Jaguars, 1st Round, 3rd overall
  • Peter King (Sports Illustrated): Oakland Raiders, 1st Round, 4th overall
  • Daniel Jeremiah (NFL Network): Oakland Raiders, 1st Round, 4th overall
  • Charles Davis (NFL Network): Washington Redskins, 1st Round, 3rd overall
  • Rob Rang (CBS): Jacksonville Jaguars, 1st Round, 3rd overall

Now’s your turn to put on your scouting cap. Where do you see Williams being drafted? Vote in our poll below and sound off in the comments.

Where will Leonard Williams go in the NFL draft?

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