Jacksonville.com wrote:The Jaguars got their first look at wide receiver Reggie Williams on Friday, and the verdict was unanimous: They liked what they saw.
Williams, the team's newest first-round draft pick, impressed quarterback Byron Leftwich even before Williams ran his first pass route of this weekend's mandatory minicamp at the Alltel Stadium practice fields.
"You're talking about a big guy," Leftwich said of the 6-foot-4, 225-pound Williams. "I just have to look at him to know that he's going to be everything that I expected."
Leftwich admits he paid particularly close attention to Williams because he knows the Jaguars had Leftwich's development in mind when they used the ninth overall pick last weekend on the University of Washington playmaker.
The Jaguars' dream would be for Williams to someday be Jerry Rice to Leftwich's Joe Montana. The process of turning that fantasy into reality began Friday, when Williams took his first turns in a Leftwich-led offense.
"It was kind of like how I imagined it would be," Williams said afterward. "I don't think it's going to take long to get on the same page with Byron. I'm going to try to get as many [repetitions] with him as I can before training camp, because I really want to get that chemistry down."
Coach Jack Del Rio doesn't think chemistry between Williams and Leftwich will be a problem. In fact, the mere mention of Williams brought a wide smile to Del Rio's face Friday morning.
"Reggie looked good," Del Rio said. "He's a good player, so we know he's going to look good. He'll look even better when we get the pads on and he can use his physical abilities."
Williams flashed those physical abilities right away during 11-on-11 drills in the morning practice, making a nice sideline grab in traffic of a hard-thrown pass from Leftwich.
Williams appeared to outmuscle two defenders on the play, which is something the Jaguars expect to see often from him. They particularly hope to see it inside the 20-yard line and in the end zone, two areas where Jaguars receivers often seemed to lose jump balls in the past.
The Jaguars are so confident in Williams that they already consider him the No.2 wide receiver opposite Jimmy Smith, despite the presence of former first-round pick Troy Edwards in their receiving corps.
Jacksonville also underscored that belief in Williams by trading a proven wideout, Kevin Johnson, to Baltimore the day after drafting Williams.
"I didn't know much about the Kevin Johnson deal, but it makes me feel good to know that the coaches and management have enough confidence in me to make [me] the No.2 [receiver] already," Williams said. "I need to prove to them and my teammates that I'm good enough to be there.
"And to be next to a guy like Jimmy Smith is going to be big. I want to soak up as much knowledge from him as I can."
Williams earned first-team All-Pac-10 Conference honors twice in three seasons at Washington. He departed as the school's all-time leader in catches (238) and receiving yards (3,536).
Questions about his speed prompted some draft observers to say the Jaguars might have taken Williams too high at No.9, but Williams bristles at such talk.
"I don't know where people get that from," Williams said of doubts that he has the speed to be an elite No. 1 receiver. "If you can watch me on tape, then you'll see that I never got caught from behind."
But Williams knows he will have to get in sync with Leftwich before he can ever hope to become a top-flight NFL receiver, and doing so takes time and work together.
Because of that, Williams admits it is imperative that he makes it to training camp on time. He already has been asked about a possible holdout because his agents, Carl and Kevin Poston, have a long history of difficult negotiations.
Williams vowed last weekend to sign in time for camp but backed off slightly from that promise on Friday, saying instead that he doesn't "plan" to hold out.
"I trust my agents to know that I'm going to be here," Williams said on Friday.
Source: Rookie WR target of tall expectations