Jets rookie Leonard Williams admits he needs to improve in one key area
In nine games this season, Jets rookie Leonard Williams has only recorded a half-sack, yet he's still a potential Defensive Rookie of the Year candidate. Why? Because he's been outstanding in run defense.
Yet, what makes him great is his understanding of where he can improve. Williams realizes he can stand to improve his pass rushing ability, and he's working to do so.
"I'm pretty good and stout on the run, but I need to work on my pass rush a little more," Williams said via Rich Cimini of ESPN. "In college, I got away with going down the middle of guys because I'm stronger and I could overpower guys easily. Here, I can't do that."
What's interesting about his lack of production in rushing the passer is the fact that he leads the team with 21 quarterback hits. That's a sign that he's getting to the quarterback just a second too late. If he's able to get there slightly quicker, his sack totals should increase greatly.
"Once I improve on my pass rushing," Williams said, "I'm sure I'll be out there more on third down."
With the Jets' bevy of pass rushers to throw at quarterbacks, it's easy to understand why Williams may not be on the field for third downs as often. Sheldon Richardson and Muhammad Wilkerson are proven studs on the defensive line and are hard to take off the field. But if Williams continues to improve, he'll be a three-down player in no time.