The Pittsburgh Steelers 2013 rookie camp has come and gone and while we did get a few small reports about players from the members of the media present, here is a new tidbit to pass along and it concerns sixth-round draft pick Vince Williams.
Bob Labriola of Steelers Digest was asked on Tuesday during the Steelers Live show if any other player had caught his eye over the weekend after thoroughly discussing the top draft picks and here is what he had to say about Williams.
“The one guy that I kind of noticed was Vince Williams,” said Labriola. “He would be the second pick in the sixth round, an inside linebacker from Florida State. Vince Williams, a couple of the things that I liked about him, were first of all, it wasn\’t very long into the on field sessions when Vince Williams was instructing teammates about where they needed to be – and shifting – and those kind of things.
“Vince Williams did a lot of the defensive play calling during his college career and it seems like he has a very high football IQ and it seemed to me, watching from the side, that that was a little bit on display right from the beginning.”
Labriola continue on about Williams as far as his special teams prospect go.
“The other thing about Vince Williams, and again it\’s something that doesn\’t really show in a rookie mini camp, but I think he\’s going to make special teams coordinator Danny Smith a very happy person.
“One of the main concepts, basic concepts of playing special teams, covering kicks, is find the guy with the ball, get the guy with the ball on the ground. Now that sounds like a very simplistic thing, but sometimes it can be a little bit more complicated than we might think.
“This is a guy who will be able to find the guy with the ball and get him on the ground on special teams plays, and that alone could make him a very valuable part of the 2013 Steelers.”
That certainly is great news to hear that Williams appears to be grasping the defense well and functioning as a leader this early on. Williams, as Labriola pointed out, called the defense while at Florida State but did come out on many a third downs in lieu of a defensive back.
Linebackers coach Keith Butler said during his talk with the media following the selection of Williams that they plan on finding out if he is a two or three down linebacker during training camp.
“The thing that might be a little bit of a drawback is that they took him out on third downs, but they put in another defensive back,” said Butler. “They didn’t put in another linebacker. They put in another defensive back for him. We’ll see. We will make that judgment when we get to training camp whether he is capable of being a three-down linebacker as opposed to being a two-down linebacker.”
As far as Williams being a solid special teams player for the Steelers, the Florida State product was asked during his post selection conference call if he thought that he could help the Steelers in that area.
“I think I would be a tremendous attribute on all special teams,” said Williams. “I actually played all of them at Florida State. My special teams coach taught me all of them. We only focused on a few. He didn’t want a starting linebacker running down there on kickoffs.”