I always like to see guys from my alma matter do well in the pro world. Luckily for me, Boston College has always managed to get a guy or two on my favorite team, the Giants. I’m not sure if Tom Coughlin actively seeks out BC guys because of his connection to the school from his days coaching on the Heights. Maybe all of these guys knocked up his daughter like Chris Snee did? Just kidding folks, they’re married now. Either way, the Giants took Andre Williams with their fourth round pick this year, so he gets to join Snee and Mathias Kiwanuka in the club too. Let’s meet Andre, shall we?
If you followed college football this year, you know who Andre Williams is. That’s because Williams was one of the finalists for the Heisman Trophy this year. How did he get there? Well, he was basically the entire Eagles offense, running the ball 355 times for 2,177 yards (6.1 yards per carry) and 18 TDs. He also ran for an ACC record 339 yards against N.C. State.a The Eagles weren’t very good, and they didn’t have very much of a passing game, so Williams basically needed to take this team on his shoulders, and he did. I’m glad he was rewarded with the Heisman finalist recognition, because it was well deserved, no matter what he does with his pro career.
Williams has a chance to fill in nicely for another Andre, Andre Brown, who went and signed with the Texans this offseason. Like Brown, Williams is a big, tough power back whom is listed at 5’11” and 230 lbs. That’s a solid dude right there. According to some scouting reports, Williams has excellent field vision and can kick it into a different gear to help him accelerate past defenders near the end of his runs. b Some reports say he lacks the footspeed and tackle evasion abilities that you would ideally have as an every down back, but his power will make him a very viable option in short distances and goal line situations, which the Giants have always coveted in at least one of their RBs.
Most RBs in the NFL need to do more than just run, and Williams has some tools to help him away from the ball. He’s an above average blocker for a running back. The only negative about Williams is not even a full negative, more of an unknown. He caught only 10 passes in his career at BC. He’s going to have to prove that he can also be a weapon for Eli Manning to take advantage of in the air.
The thing that most scouts don’t talk about enough is Williams’ character. When it comes to football players, people tend to only worry about character if there’s something negative to talk about. Even then, talent usually wins out anyway. That being said, I think we should single out just how good a character guy Williams is. First of all, he was a team captain in college, which is a nice accomplishment. He also reads poetry (his teammates nicknamed him “Edgar” after Edgar Allan Poe), graduated in three and a half years with a 3.0 GPA and earned a degree in applied psychology and human development. He’s also working on a novel, and hopes to one day start a foundation that helps kids through sports.c
Assuming all goes well, Williams should join newly signed Rashad Jennings as the power component to the Giants 2014 running back tandem. Peyton Hillis and David Wilson should also be in the mix, as the Giants try to revamp a running attack that was among the worst in the league last season. Here’s hoping Andre Williams can make a difference.
Williams’ torches N.C. State for 339 Yards:
Featured image courtesy of: Ed Wolfstein/USA TODAY Sports
- http://www.nj.com/giants/index.ssf/2014/05/andre_williams_scouting_report_on_giants_fourth-round_pick.html (back)
- http://www.bigblueview.com/2014/5/10/5703756/ny-giants-2014-nfl-draft-picks-round-4-andre-williams (back)
- http://si.com/3630286/the-renaissance-heisman-candidate-boston-colleges-andre-williams/ (back)
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