Alabama coach Nick Saban believes Jets first-round pick Quinnen Williams is “perfect” for today’s NFL.
Saban coached Williams at Alabama and says his former player has all the tools to succeed at the next level.
“I think the thing is his initial quickness and his ability to use his hands, play with leverage, get off the blocks quickly,” Saban said on the NFL Network. “He’s athletic, so he’s a really good pass rusher. He’s not a gigantic, huge, overpowering guy, but the rest of it is perfect for this day and age of football.”
The Jets chose Williams with the No. 3 selection in last month’s NFL Draft. He was a dominant nose tackle at Alabama, where he was named the top interior lineman in the country after he had 71 tackles, including 19.5 for loss, eight sacks and one safety last year.
“I go back to the initial quickness, the use of his hands and this guy is a really smart, instinctive player,” Saban said. “I think sometimes people overlook how that impacts someone’s production, and his production here was fabulous.”
Jets general manager Mike Maccagnan said Williams has the versatility to play anywhere on the defensive line. Defensive coordinator Gregg Williams will decide that. But the Jets are excited to put Quinnen Williams in the same front as end Leonard Williams and see how disruptive they can be.
“The ability to push the pocket from the middle and basically get guys isolated, that would be a big bonus for any team,” Maccagnan said. “We have the ability to have a very stout defense up the middle.”