One of the top defenders in the 2015 NFL draft, USC DE Leonard Williams could see his stock fall if he misses the bench-press drills.
USC DE Leonard Williams, considered by most to be a top-5 pick in the 2015 NFL draft, may skip some key drills at the 2015 NFL Scouting Combine due to shoulder issues.
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Williams told Yahoo! Sports that he was suffering from a pair of labrum tears that could prevent him from taking part in the critical bench press drill at the Combine when it starts later this month.
“That’s one of the things I have been contemplating whether I am doing or not at the combine,” Williams said. “I’ve had labrum tears in both of my shoulders, and I have not been able to do as much upper-body (work) as I have wanted to. But since (I) have been here, (my bench-press weight) has been going up. Depending on how I feel at the end of training here I’ll make a decision.”
Despite his injuries, Williams still finished with a whopping 80 tackles and seven sacks for the Trojans en route to a team MVP selection by USC as well as his 2nd consecutive First-Team All-American honors and First-Team All-PAC-12 honors.
Williams is considered on of the five best players available in the draft and is challenged only by Nebraska DE Randy Gregory as the best defensive prospect available. He is considered extremely likely to be drafted in the top three of the NFL draft and could go as high as No. 1 overall to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.
Among the other NFL teams that would have the most interest in Williams are the Tennessee Titans (No. 2), Jacksonville Jaguars (No. 3), Oakland Raiders (No. 4), Washington (No. 5) and Atlanta Falcons (No. 8).