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Broncos Sign Free Agent Linebacker Worrell Williams

The Denver Broncos are keeping busy, and have reportedly added linebacker Worrell Williams per the National Football Post.

Williams played college football at Cal where he ranks 11th on the school's all time list of tacklers with 247 over his four year career.  After his college career, Williams went undrafted and later caught on with the San Francisco 49ers.  In August of 2009, Williams signed with California of the UFL, and was most recently on Sacramento's UFL roster.

Williams, 24, is the younger brother of current Broncos linebacker D.J. Williams, and has been dreaming of the chance to play alongside his older sibling.  D.J. offered a scouting report on his brother to the Rocky Mountain News last spring:

"I think he'll be a great player," D.J. Williams said of his brother. "He's a true (middle) linebacker type. He's short, but he's stocky and very athletic. And you can tell by the way he's played he has football intelligence. . . . I never really pushed football with him or anything like that, he just started playing. I'm just happy he's had a great career in college and just to see the way he's handled himself and played on the field too is special."

 Worrell Williams stands at six feet tall, and played his senior season at Cal at 255 pounds.  According to the National Football Post, Williams is now reporting around 245 pounds.

Perhaps considered a long shot to make the Broncos' final roster, Williams is an intriguing prospect because of his family ties to the team, as well as the fact that he is the third Williams linebacker on the Broncos' roster and the fourth defender who will wear that name on the back of their jersey.

Some NFL observers were quite surprised to find that Williams went undrafted and relatively unnoticed, and maybe for good reason.  An article from the Examiner covering Cal football makes a nice point in a piece from last summer:

What I don't get, is how a 3-4 defense that ranked 26th out of 119 teams, doesn't garner more attention for their linebackers.  Where's the justice?  Three of the four starting linebackers from that squad were available this last weekend, but only one of them (Follett) was fortunate to be drafted out of 256 picks?

Some would say, "It is what it is."  I guess that's true, but it is an oddity that Williams is waiting on a team to give him the opportunity he will likely make the most of.

Looks like D.J. did enough recruiting, and Worrell did enough to warrant a pre-season tryout from the Broncos, and with their ILB situation in question depth-wise, it's not a bad idea.  Now, it appears as though it's one of the most competitive units on the team.

Here is a scouting report from the folks at NFL Draft Scout:


A versatile athlete who has seen action in the middle linebacker and at weak-side linebacker in the 4-3 alignment, as well as inside linebacker in the 3-4, Williams has the production (246 career tackles) and versatility to warrant consideration in the middle rounds. Like his older brother, Denver Broncos' standout D.J. Williams, Worrell has many of the physical characteristics scouts are looking for but his marginal instincts for the position make him a lesser player than athlete. Despite starting the past three years and showing a propensity for flashy plays, Williams has only once earned all-conference accolades by Pac-10 coaches -- honorable mention as a senior.


Positives: Stout, powerful frame. ... Legitimate NFL athlete. ... Good straight-line speed. ... Good initial quickness and smooth acceleration. ... At least adequate agility in space to be effective in coverage. ... Good upper-body strength, flashing explosiveness in disengaging from blocks and as a hitter. ... Can separate the ball from the ballcarrier due to his explosive hitting. ... Good balance and can break down to make the open-field tackle. ... Times blitzes and stunts well to get to the quarterback. ... Versatile defender with starting experience at middle and weak-side linebacker. ... Good bloodlines. Brother, D.J. Williams, is a linebacker with the Denver Broncos.

 Negatives: Shorter than scouts would prefer. ... Bit of a "tweener." ... Lacks the instincts teams want inside. ... Overaggressive. ... Bites on play-action and too often is out of position. ... Lacks the speed and agility for coverage preferred to move outside. ... Inconsistent. Can make the eye-popping hit, but then disappear for the rest of the game.