As the New York Jets can brag about an excellent defensive line, defensive end Leonard Williams is already developing into a leader heading into his sophomore season.
When looking at the chemistry of the overall defense of the New York Jets, one doesn’t have to think hard to know their defensive line can truly be legendary this upcoming season. With defensive ends Muhammad Wilkerson and Sheldon Richardson leading the way, newly acquired defensive tackle Steve McLendon will also bring the chaos in 2016.
Defensive end Leonard Williams enjoyed a solid rookie season last year. In 2015, Williams totaled 29 tackles, 3.0 sacks and showed how disruptive he can be the moment the gets into the backfield of his opponents.
It’s always a good indicator of players heading into their second year in the NFL showing off what they’ve learned and of course, the impact they have in the locker room. The Jets truly got a steal in the 2015 NFL Draft when Williams landed to the No. 6 overall pick.
It was an easy decision for general manager Mike Maccagnan considering many draft analysts knew that Williams was the best overall player in that draft, let alone an impact defender ready to take the league by storm.
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So far during training camp and even preseason football, Williams is looking sharp and executing his assignments well.
He still has some things to work on but for the most part, is handling everything in stride as he could be a force to reckon with on the Jets this upcoming season.
Coming off a 10-6 season in 2015, the Jets made it their priority to make their overall pass rush younger, faster and led by a youth revolution.
If Williams can keep up the momentum he built from last year, he will have a very productive season as the Jets are looking to once again be in the NFL Playoff hunt.
In one of his recent press conferences, head coach Todd Bowles recently chimed in his expectations for Williams in 2016 as well as the consistent leadership qualities he’s seeing from him. Here’s what he said, courtesy of the Media Relations Department of the Jets:
On Leonard Williams and his expectations for him…
The biggest thing for Leonard is to learn blocking schemes. And I think going through a year he’s just getting off the ball, and now he has to understand how people are trying to block him, and hand placement and those things like that with the fundamentals. I think he’s gotten a lot better with that. As he continues to get better with that, you’ll see him become a better player.
On Williams having the personality to be a leader…
Yes, he does. We got a bunch of leaders over there and we don’t limit it for young or older guys. But he’s developing into that on his own.
Overall, Williams is making a nice impact on the Jets and is continuing to develop into another potential leader on defense. Williams continues to develop into the next big thing and is making his presence known both on the field and off it.