April 26, 2003

Melvin Williams - Defensive End, Kansas State

Melvin Williams
Defensive End, Kansas State University

6'1", 269 pounds, 4.71/40

One Hundred Fifty-Fifth Pick Overall, Fifth Round

A speed rusher defensive end that projects to the right side. Williams had been brought into the Saints for a personal interview and physical exam. A guy with lots of speed coming off the edge, a role the Saints have been looking for in the past. Last year they spent a 7th round pick on a speed rush defensive end, Derrius Monroe from Virginia Tech, who temporarily made the final roster.

One immediate problem facing Williams is the ACL he tore in his knee in his final collegiate game. After surgery and rehab, Williams will be ready to go for training camp, according to Saints officials. The Saints personally had Williams checked out in New Orleans.

Fast and strong with a 400-pound bench and an 860-pound safe squat. A 35 1/2 inch vertical jump showcases his athletic ability. Had five sacks as a senior in 2002. In 2001 missed some time with nagging injuries and durability is a concern. May be strong but is not bulky or a factor in the running game and is clearly a situational player.

A mature pass rusher with an array of tools to use coming off the edge. At only 6'1", Williams isn't the tallest, most physically dominating defensive lineman.

"Two scouts I know had him rated between 4 and 5, so it is decent value... does not always play up to his skill level... been a bit injury prone too... they like Kansas State though..."

"With some other players on the board, especially in the secondary, this is an interesting pick. The Saints love Kansas State and Haslett probably saw Melvin Williams, who was rated higher at the beginning of the season, while scouting MLB Terry Pierce. Fairly well developed as a pass rusher but will he ever get on the field? Could grow into a player much like Willie Whitehead with some serious re-tooling."

"The knee problem aside, this guy probably wasn't a value pick. With the knee problem and the fact that he's going to miss both minicamps and maybe some of training camp, its tough to understand this decision. Even with a good knee, Williams isn't dominant in any part of his game Although his pass rush skills have promise, its not like the guy is ready to contribute."

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