STRENGTHS - Williams is an outstanding athlete for the safety position. He has the speed and range to make plays against the run on the boundary as well as run with every NFL TE and RB in man coverage. He displays loose hips, which allows him to change directions fluidly to stay with his man in space. When playing the run he flashes an explosive closing burst, which puts him in position to make plays at the LOS when he takes proper angles of pursuit.
WEAKNESSES - Williams is not an effective player against the run because of his poor tackling technique and overly aggressive angles of pursuit. He struggles to break down in space and rarely wraps up with his arms, causing him to either overrun or whiff on tackle attempts. In man coverage he is not physical and lacks the bulk and aggressiveness to be effective against TEs down-field. When playing in off and zone he is often a beat late reading the play, causing him to allow too many easy catches in front of him. Against PA he is slow to identify and lacks the instincts and burst to recover in time to get back to his assignment in coverage.
SUMMARY - Duke Williams was a disappointing prospect to evaluate because at this stage he is clearly more athlete than football player. He possesses top end speed, agility and quickness for a safety, but lacks the skills in coverage to step in as a starter early in his career. He's consistently a beat late to his assignments when playing off or zone coverage, and gives up too many easy catches in front. In press coverage he is not physical with is man at the LOS, allowing him to get a free release out of his break far too often. Williams is also a very poor tackler, as although he has the speed to play to both boundaries when in the box, he takes bad angles and tries to throw his shoulder to get the big hit as opposed to using his arms to wrap up and finish consistently. While I would not be surprised to see a team draft him higher than I have him graded, his lack of instincts and bulk will make it difficult for him to ever fully reach his athletic potential.