So that’s just what the Giants did, selecting Boston College’s Andre Williams, a 5’11”, 230-pound downhill running back who as a senior last season exploded for 2,177 yards and 18 touchdowns on 355 carries.
Interestingly, Williams, who prior to his senior season worked as part of a running back rotation, didn’t have any production in the Golden Eagles passing game last season. However, his tough, physical running style, which saw him routinely move defenders upon contact, no doubt was appealing to the Giants.
“The Giants were a team that I resonated the most with right from the beginning,” Williams told reporters via a conference call. “I had a great interview with (head) coach Tom Coughlin at the combine, and I had a feeling from that moment that this would be the team that would end up picking me up.”
His hunch proved to be correct.
On the surface, Williams seems to be nothing more than a pure power runner who had just 10 receptions in college.
Not surprisingly, Williams admitted that catching the ball out of the backfield was something he needed to continue to work on.
“Catching the ball has not been a strong point in my career,” he said. “I wasn’t called upon to do it a lot in high school or college because I was such a great runner, but it is something I’ve continued to work on throughout the years and especially this last offseason.”
What about pass blocking, which offensive coordinator Ben McAdoo once said is key for a running back to see the field in the Giants’ new offense?
“I did a lot of pass protection last year and in years past,” Williams said. “I’ve been through about five different offensive coordinators, five different offenses, and I was called upon to do different things. This year, I was called upon to run the ball, and we had a lot of success with it. But I think I’m solid at pass protection.”
Williams, who joins guard Chris Snee, linebacker Mark Herzlich and defensive end Mathias Kiwanuka as Boston College alumni who found their way to the Giants, noted that he’s been through five different offensive coordinators in his collegiate career.
That should be a positive for him, he thinks, in his quest to step right in and pick up enough of the Giants playbook to make a contribution.
“I’m just going to come in and compete and work as hard as I can and push everyone around me and have people push me as well,” he said. “If that translated to me getting onto the field, then that’s good.”