FOXBORO, Mass. — The Patriots left Boston College linebacker Mark Herzlich on the board and concluded their 2011 NFL draft by selecting TCU defensive back Malcolm Williams with the 219th pick in the seventh round.
The 5-foot-10, 204-pounder had 12 tackles in 13 games, and he was primarily used on special teams.
Williams has good speed and athleticism, based off a 40-inch vertical jump, but he won’t be used on defense. Bill Belichick must have seen something he liked in Williams’ special teams game.
Williams will have a severely uphill battle to make the roster, and he’s being described as a Matt Slater-type who would be a special teamer and little else.
This isn’t so much about the guy they drafted (Williams) as it is about the guy they didn’t draft (Herzlich). Quite frankly, there isn’t a whole lot of information floating around on Williams, and Herzlich’s inspiring storyline and close proximity to Gillette Stadium made him a huge hit for the Patriots’ following. While it won’t be a popular move, it’s very obvious Belichick didn’t think Herzlich could help the team, evidenced by the selection of Williams with their last pick.
“I can honestly say I wasn’t expecting to get drafted, but when I got that phone call from Belichick, I was really excited.”
–Williams, when asked if he was expecting to get drafted.