Each week, I like to run through the New England Patriots selection in the latest 2013 NFL Mock Draft done by our friends over at the FanSided.com main page. This week they had the Patriots taking Alabama Crimson Tide defensive tackle Jesse Williams with the 29th pick in the draft.
Williams is a solid defensive tackle prospect who, in my opinion, is clearly better than DTs deemed of similar value like Kawann Short. Interestingly enough, their mock draft had Short going one pick before the Patriots to the Denver Broncos (Jonathan Hankins was the 31st pick to the San Francisco 49ers).
Josh Sanchez writes that Williams will bring the Patriots pass rushing ability on the inside, but I view Williams as more of a run-stopper than a pass rusher. I don’t think he projects as a pass rusher, and I view him as a prototypical nose tackle. He has an excellent motor and can push the pocket on occasion with his strength, but his best asset is clearly in run defense. The Patriots already have stout run defenders on the inside in Vince Wilfork and Kyle Love, so we don’t need a guy like Williams.
I don’t like the fit here, and the defensive tackle I want is UNC’s Sylvester Williams. He projects better as a pass rusher, and he would provide the kind of interior rush that the Pats need. I want the Patriots to take a cornerback in the first round of the draft and then a DT like Sylvester Williams in the second round. Jesse Williams deserves to be selected in the late first round- just not by the New England Patriots.
The best pick for the Patriots in the late first is probably Johnthan Banks, who was not even selected in the first round of FanSided’s mock draft this week. Tony Pauline reported a couple of weeks ago that the New England Patriots are reportedly interested in taking Banks there, and I think that would be a solid selection for the Pats.
You can follow Joe Soriano on Twitter @SorianoJoe.