Rodarius Williams is the older brother of Cleveland Browns defensive back and former LSU star Greedy Williams.
A four-year standout at Oklahoma State who red-shirted in his freshman season, Williams finished with 150 tackles (35 stops) and allowed just 54.2% of the pass targets against him to be completed for 1,636 yards and 11 touchdowns. Williams logged just two career interceptions (both coming in 2017) and 27 pass breakups, finishing with a career 92.8 rating.
Williams was voted second-team all-conference in 2020 by Big 12 coaches. In 2020, he set a school record with 48 consecutive starts despite the challenges of the COVID-19 pandemic.
What He Brings
Williams is an impressive athlete with good linear explosiveness and long speed to go with his 6'0", 190-pound frame. Williams is also versatile; in college, he lined up in both man and zone coverage as a cornerback and off the line of scrimmage as a safety or nickel defender in certain sub-packages.
That said, Williams showed some lower-body stiffness and a lack of agility in his game. He struggled to stay with receivers when playing in tight coverage and staying in step with them through their routes.
Here is what NFL Draft Bible had to say about Williams in their scouting report from earlier this year:
Williams is a press-man cornerback who exudes confidence and physicality to counteract bigger body pass-catchers outside the numbers. Super aggressive, Williams is equally as sufficient physically as a tackler as he is at the line of scrimmage. He wants to get his hands on opponents, forcing the issue early in reps. There is no questioning the confidence Williams plays with.
Williams isn’t the quickest player in the world, lacking the change of direction skills to stay in phase against shiftier wide receivers if he cannot gain control early in reps. His press technique is sound, but he can get a bit grabby early in reps. Williams lacks patience and trust in his eye discipline to work in his catch technique.
Williams is on Year 1 of his four-year rookie deal, which is worth a total value of $3,653,136. His Year 1 cap hit is $703,284. If Williams doesn't make the roster, the team will save $660,000 on the cap and take a $43,284 dead money hit this year, with the rest of the prorated signing bonus accelerating into the 2022 cap.
If we've learned nothing else from head coach Joe Judge's first season, it's not to count out a draft pick just because he was selected late on Day 3. That said, the depth the Giants have assembled at cornerback in the off-season makes for a very steep hill to climb for guys like Williams, who, while talented enough to belong in the NFL, might end up caught up in the numbers game.
If Williams does make the final roster, he will likely be strictly a special teams player, at least in the beginning. But from a bigger picture perspective, it might be worth watching to see if Williams starts to cross-train more at safety, where his physical and athletic profile appears to be a better fit.
We'll see what training camp brings, of course, but regardless, unless there is a rash of injuries to the depth in front of him, Williams is likely destined for the practice squad.
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