Preston Williams – The Dolphins Wide Receiver You Want
Ok, hang with me here, we’re talking about Dolphin wide receivers, I get it. The Dolphins wide receiving corps is generally less than desirable. It reminds me of the Dallas Cowboys receivers before the start of 2018, where they did not have a wide receiver taken before the 10th round (Michael Gallup) in start-up drafts. This is exactly why it makes sense to take a really late dart throw at the most talented wide receiver on the Dolphins roster.
6’-4” - 211 lbs.
Junior Year: 96 receptions, 1,345 yards, and 14 touchdowns.
Lead the Mountain West Conference in receptions, yards, and touchdowns. Finished third in the NCAA in touchdowns and receptions and fourth in receiving yards.
Preston Williams is a polarizing prospect. He was a 4-star prospect (247 Sports) coming out of Lovejoy High School in Georgia. Williams’ college decision came down to some of the top schools in the country, including Georgia, Tennessee, and Florida. He tore his ACL his senior year of high school and waiting for him in the recovery room was coach Mike Bobo (Current head coach of Colorado State). Bobo at the time was coaching for Georgia and heavily recruited Williams, but he also developed a relationship with him and wanted to show his support. Despite this, Williams chose to play football at the University of Tennessee, but saw minimal playing time during his freshman year (despite being named SEC freshman of the week for a 3 catch, 98 yard, 2 touchdown performance). Shortly after starting his sophomore campaign - and once again seeing minimal playing time - he made the decision to transfer to Colorado State to reunite with the coach who believed in him, Bobo.
Williams was forced to sit out the 2017 season based on NCAA transferring rules and was also suspended in the fall of 2017 for a misdemeanor assault charge with his girlfriend, which has a lot to do with him not receiving an invite to the NFL combine.
Active blocker - He wasn’t taking plays off when the ball is moving downfield. He continued to be involved in the play and stays active to help his team.
Works for yards after the catch - Similar to his blocking attempts, he works hard to move the ball and gain those extra yards. He’s not overly fast, or strong, but his effort and physical play are very apparent with the ball in his hands.
Tracking the ball - He’s an outfielder tracking a fly ball while it's in the air.
Hands catcher - Instead of catching the football with his body, Williams uses his hands. Importantly, this appears to be his instinct rather than something drilled into him.
Playmaker/ Big Play Ability - He has the ability to break a play at any point in time. This is mostly attributed to his effort. For a taller, leaner receiver, he's hard to bring down.
Release - He isn't creative with his release off the line of scrimmage. He tends to utilize the same hesitation release far too often. He can actually look lazy coming off the ball at times.
Slow get off - Williams is a longer guy and takes a few extra steps to get rolling. This isn't a terrible trait but this can create separation issues against NFL cornerbacks.
Speed - Williams recorded 4.66 in the 40 yard-dash. His jump ball ability and work after the catch help mask this, but he could absolutely benefit from NFL speed training to push his game to another level.
The Dynasty Outlook:
Its OTAs - and camp hype needs to always be taken with a grain of salt - but Williams is already impressing in Miami. Devante Parker has underwhelmed in his time with the Dolphins, while Kenny Stills is a decent wide receiver but we can't expect him to be anything more than what he's shown over the past six seasons. Jakeem Grant and Albert Wilson are good depth pieces, but are similar players and both coming off season-ending injuries. Williams is being drafted after all of these guys and could quite possibly have the most upside of the group. Williams is not the next A.J. Green or Alshon Jeffrey, but buying Preston Williams now at his rookie and start-up ADP should easily provide you more return on your investment even as soon as Week 1. Williams’ ability combined with the chip on his shoulder makes him a great buy, especially on a team that is has a very unclear depth chart.