The New Orleans Saints selected Florida State cornerback P.J. Williams, adding a player known for his leaping ability, with their second of two third-round picks in the NFL draft.
Williams made a splash nationally with a video which showcased his amazing leaps.
Now, the Saints third-round draft pick hopes to have a similar impact on the field.
Posted on his Instagram page, Williams completed a box jump which was at the heights of his shoulders. His jump has been estimated at nearly 60 inches.
“Later on that that day, I talked to my agent — he sent it out to some people,” Williams said in a conference call with reporters. “About an hour after that, he called me and said it was going to be on ESPN tomorrow.”
Williams, who said he’s eager to learn from veteran cornerbacks Keenan Lewis and Brandon Browner, dunked a basketball for the first time as a ninth-grader in high school.
“Growing up, I used to flip off everything and do stuff,” he said. “I always had a lot of athleticism. Jumping on that, that was just something big I jumped on. We actually worked up to it. I had another level; I pretty much got up there, but I didn’t stick it like I did on that one.”
Will he stick with the Saints?
NFL.com rates one of his weaknesses as an inability to defend as well after jamming at the line. Also, his physical motor has been graded as hot and cold; he’ll need to play consistent under defensive coordinator Rob Ryan.
The 6-foot, 196-pound Williams, selected 78th overall, is the third defensive player taken by the Saints, who had five picks in the first three rounds.
“I’m excited,” Williams said. “The Saints were definitely a team that I talked to quite a bit; they let me know that I was a great fit for their defense. Once I got that call, I was definitely excited to land in a great place like that, and with a great team and a lot of guys that I can learn from and grow with. This is definitely a great time for me.”
New Orleans was expected to emphasize defense with some of its higher draft choices after finishing second-to-last in the NFL last season in yards allowed per game.
Williams started 13 games last season for the Seminoles and was credited with 74 tackles, 10 pass breakups and an interception. He had four interceptions in his three seasons at Florida State, with three coming last season.
“It’s definitely something good to be able to have that success at Florida State and come from a winning program where losing is not something that you’re used to,” Williams said. “When that is the case, it makes you really want to do whatever it takes to win.
“When you get players like that, it’s definitely easy for them to fit in and be able to help you go win some games or a Super Bowl. Playing in all of those big games has definitely helped me out, and that experience will help my team win some games.”
Gary Estwick contributed to this report.