2022 NFL Draft: Alabama’s Jameson Williams declares after breakout junior season with Crimson Tide

Alabama receiver Jameson Williams introduced Thursday that he’s declaring for the 2022 NFL Draft after a standout junior season with the Crimson Tide. Williams led his workforce with 1,572 yards receiving and 15 receiving touchdowns as he hauled in 79 passes after transferring in following two seasons at Ohio State.

Williams suffered a reported ACL tear early within the second quarter of Alabama’s 33-18 loss to Georgia within the School Soccer Playoff Nationwide Championship on Monday. Nonetheless, the dynamic 6-foot-2 speedster is anticipated to bear surgical procedure quickly and make a full restoration. He stays a projected first-round decide, in line with CBS Sports activities draft analysts Ryan Wilson and Josh Edwards. 

It took transferring to Alabama for Williams, a former four-star prospect, to interrupt out on the nationwide stage. He caught simply 15 passes over two seasons for the Buckeyes in 2019 and 2020 whereas ceding the highlight to different star receivers similar to Garrett Wilson and Chris Olave, each of whom mission as first-round picks themselves. 

Williams shortly broke out upon transferring to the Tide, as he made 4 catches for 126 yards and a landing within the season-opening win over Miami. Williams later posted back-to-back video games with three landing grabs vs. New Mexico State and Arkansas, and had two extra video games (vs. Texas A&M and LSU) with 10 receptions as he grew to become the favourite perimeter goal of Heisman Trophy profitable quarterback Bryce Younger.

Evan Neal, Alabama’s greatest offensive lineman and potential No. 1 decide, additionally declared for the draft earlier on Thursday. 

The place Williams tasks within the NFL

Williams ranks No. 8 total within the CBS Sports activities NFL Draft Place Rankings and is taken into account the No. 2 receiver within the class. He’s sandwiched between Wilson and Olave, his former teammates at Ohio State, within the prime three of the receiver rankings.

However his inventory has clearly cooled amid the knee harm. Ryan Wilson projected Williams to go No. 18 to the Saints in a Monday mock draft. Josh Edwards projected the identical in a mock up to date Thursday. 

“Williams suffered an harm within the nationwide championship recreation, and it will be naive to suppose that can have zero influence on his draft inventory,” Edwards wrote. “As Ryan Wilson identified, Jeffery Simmons was considered a top-10-caliber participant, suffered an harm and fell into the 20s. I might see an identical path being true for Williams.”

Chris Trapasso didn’t have Williams as a first-rounder as of Thursday, which showcases the diverging opinions on the place he’ll be chosen.

Changing Williams at Alabama

Williams and John Metchie accounted for 56.3% of Alabama’s yards receiving coming into the nationwide title recreation. Metchie, a junior, might additionally declare for the draft, which would depart Younger with out his prime two targets from this season. After all, the Crimson Tide are well-versed at changing gobs of departing manufacturing. 

If Metchie additionally departs, slot receiver Slade Bolden can be the Crimson Tide’s prime returning pass-catcher if he returns. Among the many more than likely breakout candidates on the perimeter can be Traeshon Holden and Ja’Corey Brooks, each of whom stepped up and performed key roles after Williams exited within the nationwide championship recreation.

Holden was a sophomore this season who ended the yr with 21 catches for 239 yards and a landing. Brooks was a real freshman this season, and the previous five-star prospect made 15 catches throughout his debut marketing campaign with 10 of these coming within the workforce’s two CFP video games. Fellow Class of 2021 signees Agiye Corridor, JoJo Earle and Christian Leary are in line for greater roles subsequent season as properly.

There isn’t a scarcity of receiver expertise on the roster, and as Williams confirmed this season, the switch portal is an choice for Alabama in the event that they really feel compelled to lure in a promising veteran to assist out.

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