Eleven targets for Commanders at pick No. 11: Jameson Williams

Jameson Williams

In this series, Pete Hailey will preview 11 players whom the Commanders could select with the 11th overall pick in the upcoming NFL Draft.

Next up: Wide receiver Jameson Williams.

Background: Turned 21 years old in March... 6-foot-1, 179-pound wideout... St. Louis native... Played sparingly at Ohio State for two years before breaking out with Alabama as a junior... 79 catches for 1,572 yards and 15 touchdowns in 2021.

Biggest strength: Williams doesn't just run by opposing defensive backs. He dusts them. He blows by them. He shreds them. 

A torn ACL in the national title game against Georgia prevented Williams from posting a 40-yard dash time, but no one needed a Combine run from him to solidify the fact that he's fastfast. A ton of stats prove that, too, including this one: he had four touchdowns of 70-plus yards for the Crimson Tide last year.

Williams may not have the most developed route tree, but when you're as explosive as him, why waste time on the short and intermediate stuff?

His straight-line patterns are ridiculous, and because of that, he's also a problem on double moves, skinny posts and anything else that challenges a defense over the top.

Biggest question mark: Williams' knee injury would be the easy answer here, but torn ACLs are becoming less and less devastating each year. Therefore, it's not likely to impact his draft stock at all, and though he may miss a couple of games as a rookie, his career should still be a bountiful one.


There are some concerns, however, over his effectiveness when he's not flying by helpless defenders. 

Williams is a very lean target, meaning he won't be able to consistently shield or box out his man when coverage is tight. Scouting reports on the former 'Bama star also question his catch strength, wondering if he'll ever be someone who can be relied on in 50-50 situations.

Could those types of worries eventually be considered overthinking in the event that Williams becomes Taller Tyreek Hill? Hell yeah. That said, they still are weaknesses that can be exploited — assuming guys in the NFL can figure out a way to stay in stride with Williams.

Potential fit in Washington: When Williams gets back to 100%, he's going to make Terry McLaurin and Curtis Samuel look slow. That's not an easy thing to do.

And now that the Commanders have Carson Wentz, they're better positioned to take advantage of a burner like Williams. Wentz won't have trouble reaching teammates who have wiggled free down the sideline or in between the hashes, which is something Taylor Heinicke struggled with in 2021.

Washington's need for one more dynamic receiver is obvious, and Williams completely embodies that adjective. Should he end up on Ron Rivera's club, then Juan Soto won't be the only dude famous for hitting home runs in the area.

Random and probably ultimately useless fact that's being included in this story anyway: Williams owns the Missouri state record in the 300-meter hurdles... and took the record away from Ezekiel Elliott. Commanders fans should love him already just for that.

Previous profiles: WR Treylon Burks | CB Trent McDuffie | S Kyle Hamilton | LB Devin Lloyd | WR Garrett Wilson | WR Drake London | CB Derek Stingley Jr. | WR Chris Olave | CB Ahmad "Sauce" Gardner