Alabama in the Pros

New York Jets could create an elite defense, should it draft Quinnen Williams

Randy Sartin - USA TODAY Sports

It has a franchise quarterback in Sam Darnold and a big-play running back in Le’Veon Bell, of whom it got in a trade from the Pittsburgh Steelers, but the New York Jets still need to grab impact players on defense for next fall. 

With Adam Gase coming from the Dolphins as head coach, the Jets brought in linebacker C.J. Mosley from the Baltimore Ravens in free agency – signing him to a five-year deal worth $85 million and $51 million guaranteed.

In five seasons with the Ravens, Mosley totaled at least 100 tackles in four years and led the team in stops in four of five years. Upon its decision to start rookie quarterback Lamar Jackson during the middle portion of 2018, it was Mosley that captained Baltimore’s defense and took pressure off Jackson as the team made the playoffs. 

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Aside from Mosley, the Jets have Leonard Williams (formerly of Southern California), Avery Williamson, Jamal Adams and Marcus Maye. New York carries the third overall pick in the upcoming NFL Draft and with Arizona looking at Kyler Murray of Oklahoma and San Francisco eyeing Nick Bosa of Ohio State, Quinnen Williams of Alabama fits the Jets perfectly. 

The 6-foot-3, 303-pounder showed at the NFL Combine that he fast despite his size. 

Williams clocked a time of 4.83 seconds in the 40-yard dash, which was the fourth fastest time recorded by any 300-pound player since 2013, while displaying the burst, technique and core strength of an inside pass rusher. He led the Crimson Tide in tackles for loss (19.5) and quarterback pressures (12) last season, and was among the team leaders in sacks with eight. 

Tom Brady, quarterback of the New England Patriots, has stated multiple times about him continuing to play football until he’s 45 years old. Seeing how the Jets face the Patriots twice a year, having Williams lay some tough hits on the 40-year-old might make him rethink the idea. 

After being fooled by Anthony Barr (re-signed with the Vikings), drafting Williams is the next option for Gase. The Birmingham (Ala.) native is listed as the No. 1 defensive lineman in this year’s class and is in the running to be the No. 1 pick in April with the venue at Nashville, Tenn. 

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Stephen M. Smith is the managing editor and senior writer for Touchdown Alabama Magazine.  You can “like” him on Facebook or “follow” him on Twitter, via @CoachingMSmith.

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