Receiver showcasing ‘freakish' talents

Although the San Diego Chargers are committed to drafting a wide receiver, there is no guarantee it will happen in round one. The team may address its need at safety first, knowing a safety is more likely to make an impact as a rookie than a receiver. If that happens, there is one mid-round prospect the Bolts were scouting at the Senior Bowl who has all the team is looking for in a receiver.

Paul Williams (6-foot-1, 200 lbs.) is a tough, physical receiver. He moved into the starting line-up at Fresno State as a junior in 2005 and led the team with 43 receptions for 729 yards and seven touchdowns. He was named first-team All-WAC following the season.

He suffered through an injury-plagued season as a senior, limiting him to 21 catches in seven games played. However, he is still considered one of the top receivers in Bulldog history and had his talents described as "freakish" by Head Coach Pat Hill.

Williams was healthy enough to showcase himself for scouts this offseason. As much as his participation in collegiate all-star games was about proving that he is physically fit, it was also an opportunity for him to improve.

"I learned so much (during Senior Bowl) week, just hanging around with the Buccaneer coaches, learning their offense and talking with them. Also, playing in the East-West (Shrine) Game and hanging around with the NFL guys there, I learned so much," he said.

Williams was particularly impressive during Senior Bowl week. He ran crisp routes, setting up defenders with impressive stop-and-go speed. Additionally, he worked to make himself available to his quarterback, aggressively attacked the ball and gave smaller defenders fits by regularly out-jumping them.

While he needs to run crisper routes and catch the ball more consistently, he certainly showed the ability to be an impact player on the next level.

"Whoever drafts me is going to get a hard worker," Williams said. "I come from Fresno State, where we were always bred to be tough and aggressive in whatever we do."

It remains to be seen what Williams' immediate role will be on the pro level. He will no doubt be helped by his ability to contribute on special teams; he worked on coverage units throughout his career and blocked a punt as a junior.

However, he yearns to make an impact on offense, not just special teams. Because of that, he has been watching tape of one of the NFL's top offensive playmakers.

"Roy Williams is my favorite player. He's really athletic and explosive so I try to pattern myself after that guy," Williams said.

Paul Williams may never be as dominant as his Motown model. But if he can continue to win his one-on-one match-ups while contributing on special teams, he would represent a serious upgrade to San Diego's wide receiver corps.


SD Super Chargers Top Stories