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Javonte Williams 2021 Outlook


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Javonte Williams, just turned 21 (April 25), RB for the North Carolina Tar Heels.

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Javonte played 11 games in 2020, and got 1445 yards total and 22 TDs (mostly rushing). Not too shabby; however he split the field with Michael Carter (Senior) who in fact had MORE yards (1512) in 2020 (although most of that difference was racked up in a meaningless game against Western Carolina). Carter (#8 in the clips) has also declared for the draft; he is a year older but also still an interesting prospect, even if Williams steals the limelight, so let's take a look at both.

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First play is him going deep in a pass play, but the CB getting no separation; but by drawing the CB with him, the TE gets space in the slant.

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Another aggressive attempt to include Williams in the passing game, but one that blows up in their face as the Virginia D makes a smart play (Charles Snowden, a guy who made a very good impression as an edge rusher this game). You can see however throughout the play that QB Howell has only one thought, and that is to get the ball to Williams.

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Now this is the kind of play we want to see from our guys: Williams again takes it outside, gets stuck behind the line of scrimmage, then breaks a tackle, breaks another tackle, then drags the 3rd tackler for 3 more yards and turns a sure negative play into 8 positive yards.

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In the meantime, Michael Carter (#8) ran a couple times perfectly between the tackles, while Williams took it more to the outside. This may be a consideration for NFL teams, especially a team like Seattle who like old fashioned bangers.

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Williams tries the same but fails; that's not entirely his fault as the Virginia LB #6 bursts through and tackles him from behind.

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...and makes up for it by crashing through a pile of meat for the first down.

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Pass protection time. Although the play results in a batted pass and a fumble, that's not on Williams, who plugs the gap with maximum energy. I approve. It may look as if he made the wrong choice as the guard (#68) gets overpowered and let's his man go, but the Center (#63) was dealing with 2 men, so that's where he went to help. Good move, can't fault it. Later in the game there's several more good pass pro. I likes it.

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Here's another play I like; It may not make any highlight reels, but here he runs a decent route, gets good separation, then turns to his QB to be ready.

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This however is one for the highlight reels: good athletic catch and a first down. Excellent.

I like Williams a lot, and I think he's clearly a better prospect than Travis Etienne. However, don't forget about Michael Carter who maybe a nice sleeper on the 3rd day if he lands on the right team.

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NFL Network's Tom Pelissero reports North Carolina RB Javonte Williams could be a surprise first round pick in the NFL Draft. 

Pelissero cited multiple sources who believe Williams -- not Najee Harris or Travis Etienne -- is the draft's top back. "I love Javonte Williams," a high-ranking AFC executive told Pelissero. "I think he's the best back in the draft." A tough runner with an 89th percentile agility score and a 71st percentile burst score, Williams could be the surprise preference for running back-hungry teams like the Steelers, who have been closely linked to Harris. Williams in 2020 was sixth in the nation with 1,140 rushing yards and third among running backs with 19 touchdowns. His eye-popping 7.3 yards per carry was the highest among all RB prospects in the 2021 draft (though he received far fewer carries than Harris in 2020). Williams makes sense as a best ball value before he's drafted by a team that could instantly make him a three-down back. 

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  • 2 weeks later...
33 minutes ago, GeorgeCostanza said:

so how long is melvin gordon going to annoy us?

For a while- he's still a good player. Maybe next year is this guy's show as the starter. Melvin has his own injury concerns, so you could see a late 2021 surge for the rookie.

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I like him more than most RBs in this draft but that's also reflective of the poor quality of this RB class

He reminds me a lot of Zack Moss and David Montgomery from previous classes--not necessarily a bad thing. Tackles broken was the big selling point and not so great athleticism or raw talent made up for with contact balance and vision

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I think he looks pretty damn good. However this season is going to be a lot of "why the hell is melvin gordon getting so man god damn touches?!" games. 

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5 hours ago, yossarian said:

I think he looks pretty damn good. However this season is going to be a lot of "why the hell is melvin gordon getting so man god damn touches?!" games. 

When Aaron Rodgers gets to town, it won't even matter

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  • 1 month later...

Serious question... does anyone think Javonte has a high bust potential? I mean, wasn't Royce Freeman hyped up exactly the same way 4 years ago? Javonte has a very similar build and metrics as Freeman -- big back that takes contact, runs a 4.6, good measurables -- but not great. Not only that, but he's going into a season very much like the Broncos had in 2018. Major question marks at QB and WR, no real sense of offensive identity.

It's easy to look at Javonte's college highlights and think he's the next Marshawn Lynch... but Royce Freeman's highlight reel looked pretty damn good too.

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I don't think the Royce Freeman comp is very applicable, as he came with significantly more tread on his collegiate career (947 rushing attempts vs 366 for Williams).

Edited by lolcopter
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1 hour ago, lolcopter said:

I don't think the Royce Freeman comp is very applicable, as he came with significantly more tread on his collegiate career (947 rushing attempts vs 366 for Williams).

Sure... but does the number of college carries really mean anything?
If you want to compare college careers, you'll find no better parallel than the one and only Trent Richardson:

Richardson (5'11", 224lbs, 4.45 40 time):

Year School Conf Class Pos G Att Yds Avg TD Rec Yds Avg TD Plays Yds Avg TD
*2009 Alabama SEC FR RB 14 145 751 5.2 8 16 126 7.9 0 161 877 5.4 8
*2010 Alabama SEC SO RB 11 112 700 6.3 6 23 266 11.6 4 135 966 7.2 10
*2011 Alabama SEC JR RB 13 283 1679 5.9 21 29 338 11.7 3 312 2017 6.5 24

 

Javonte Williams (5'10", 212lbs, 4.55 40 time) :

Year School Conf Class Pos G Att Yds Avg TD Rec Yds Avg TD Plays Yds Avg TD
2018 North Carolina ACC FR RB 10 43 224 5.2 5 8 58 7.3 0 51 282 5.5 5
*2019 North Carolina ACC SO RB 13 166 933 5.6 5 17 176 10.4 1 183 1109 6.1 6
*2020 North Carolina ACC JR RB 11 157 1140 7.3 19 25 305 12.2 3 182 1445 7.9 22


I'm a bit concerned that Javonte -- in the NFL -- will soon be a 'plodder' because he's not fast or explosive enough for the speed of most linebackers and D-linemen. 

 

Edited by AirForceOne
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The Denver Post's Ryan O'Halloran believes second-round rookie RB Javonte Williams will start for the Broncos in Week 1.

"I think he's the Week 1 starter," O'Halloran suggested. "You do not trade up in the second round for that position without having him earmarked to be your main guy. Melvin Gordon has been a complete no-show during OTAs. If they thought he was still the starter, I believe he would've made an appearance or two." Denver obviously leaped the pack for Williams on Day 2, trading pick No. 40 and a fourth-rounder to Atlanta in order to move up to No. 35 ahead of the Dolphins, who were rumored to be in on the 21-year-old in that range. Perhaps Gordon reports to mandatory minicamp June 15-17 and all of this immediately gets swept under the rug. Until that time, Williams' worst-case scenario is splitting touches while his best-case is opening the year ahead of Mike Boone as the de facto three-down runner.

Jun 13, 2021, 11:29 PM ET
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On 6/10/2021 at 8:57 AM, AirForceOne said:

Serious question... does anyone think Javonte has a high bust potential? I mean, wasn't Royce Freeman hyped up exactly the same way 4 years ago? Javonte has a very similar build and metrics as Freeman -- big back that takes contact, runs a 4.6, good measurables -- but not great. Not only that, but he's going into a season very much like the Broncos had in 2018. Major question marks at QB and WR, no real sense of offensive identity.

It's easy to look at Javonte's college highlights and think he's the next Marshawn Lynch... but Royce Freeman's highlight reel looked pretty damn good too.

Every rookie RB has high bust potential. There's absolutely zero reason to take a rookie in the first 4 rounds unless they have a very clear grasp on the starting role similar to Harris this year.

He does not have a clear grasp on the starting job. He is more of a 7th round value or so. We will see if that's where he goes or if he rises to the 4th round because people love over drafting rookie RBs. 

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If things like that O'Halloran take get digested en masse, he's going to be overdrafted.   Melvin Gordon is still only 28, and had 4.6 ypc last year- he's not instantly handing the job over, and it's not like they can't use both guys to start the season.    Williams makes sense in a shallow league or if he lasts long enough that you can keep him on the bench while he gets his feet wet.  He's a real tough sell if you're drafting him to start every week in a redraft.   

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14 hours ago, BrianM said:

If things like that O'Halloran take get digested en masse, he's going to be overdrafted.   Melvin Gordon is still only 28, and had 4.6 ypc last year- he's not instantly handing the job over, and it's not like they can't use both guys to start the season.    Williams makes sense in a shallow league or if he lasts long enough that you can keep him on the bench while he gets his feet wet.  He's a real tough sell if you're drafting him to start every week in a redraft.   

He's not that tough a sell in redraft.   Just depends on where you can get him and what you're expecting.

If this hype continues,  I think he's probably a 4th round pick.  Not that his ADP will get there but in almost every draft, someone is going to to reach a bit.

 

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5 hours ago, K197040 said:

He's not that tough a sell in redraft.   Just depends on where you can get him and what you're expecting.

If this hype continues,  I think he's probably a 4th round pick.  Not that his ADP will get there but in almost every draft, someone is going to to reach a bit.

 

If in every draft someone is reaching for him in the 4th round wouldn’t that make his ADP the 4th round?

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1 hour ago, Gohawks said:

If in every draft someone is reaching for him in the 4th round wouldn’t that make his ADP the 4th round?

Math checks out.

 

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9 hours ago, K197040 said:

Math checks out.

 

Thanks for making my day.

But seriously how can you even begin to entertain the thought of taking this guy in the 4th round, unless you know for certain Gordon is out of the picture?

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4 hours ago, theSPANKER said:

But seriously how can you even begin to entertain the thought of taking this guy in the 4th round, unless you know for certain Gordon is out of the picture?

imagine it’s a movie, big hollywood production, let's call it “THE DERRICK HENRY STORY” —

javonte williams is playing the part of our hero,* melvin gordon is playing the villain demarco murray.

question is, how true to the real story** will this play out?  i’m thinking gordon will be demarco murray for the full season (unless gordon pulls a marlon mack injury/timing). makes javonte a get in keeper / dynasty, but a costly reach in redraft — way too many reliable players in round 4 to reach for williams 

*hollywood cameras add 5 inches and 30 pounds and stiffer arm

 

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5 hours ago, theSPANKER said:

 

But seriously how can you even begin to entertain the thought of taking this guy in the 4th round, unless you know for certain Gordon is out of the picture?

gonna be awfully dodgy in ppr if the coachspeak comes to fruition, but ... the one thing MGIII is quite adept at is being proficient enuff in the passing game. 

if he (MGIII) is getting the vast majority of 3rd down/2 minute/ketchup, well ... that's really gonna sink the young'ns value to the point of relying on TDs and prodigious ground gains - the former is dicey on a marginal, yet promising, offense ... the latter is impossible to peg as attainable wifout seeing the chap take one live carry vs professional tackle foosball defenders. 

it's a stretch to imbibe that adp - gotta be a yuuuuuge believer in this salamander justifying his propaganda.

🦖 BANG. A. GONG.  🦖

 

 

 

 

ps - whut's that? MGIII may be the value play in ppr? 

SAY WHOOODJAWHAT?

☎️

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6 hours ago, theSPANKER said:

Thanks for making my day.

But seriously how can you even begin to entertain the thought of taking this guy in the 4th round, unless you know for certain Gordon is out of the picture?

4th round was probably too aggressive a take.   But seems like he's going to split time with Gordon at the worst.   With the potential to take the majority of the work.   When i look at the RBs going from around 40-65, I think there will be lot of managers taking a shot on Williams.    I suppose I'm transferring my experience with the few leagues I'm in.   Seems like every draft where I might wait for a group of RBs to come back to me, they all get snapped up a round or two early.    Which I know isn't the case for everyone's draft.    That being said, if the hype train continues, I don't think 5th round will be out of the question by the beginning of the season.

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