Jameson Williams Says He'd Have Broken 40 Record at NFL Combine Without Knee Injury

Paul KasabianFeatured Columnist IIApril 29, 2022

LAS VEGAS, NEVADA - APRIL 28: (L-R) Jameson Williams poses with NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell onstage after being selected 12th by the Detroit Lions during round one of the 2022 NFL Draft on April 28, 2022 in Las Vegas, Nevada. (Photo by David Becker/Getty Images)
David Becker/Getty Images

Detroit Lions wide receiver Jameson Williams didn't take part in this year's NFL Scouting Combine because of his ongoing recovery from a torn ACL, but he told reporters Friday that he's confident he would have broken the 40-yard dash record if given the chance.

Eric Woodyard @E_Woodyard

<a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/Lions?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#Lions</a> rookie Jameson Williams doesn't lack confidence. He said if he would've ran the 40 in the Combine he would've ran the "fastest 40 ever."

The Lions moved up 20 spots to No. 12 overall in the draft to select Williams, the former Alabama star who caught 79 passes for 1,572 yards and 15 touchdowns last year.

Williams' lightning-quick speed led to him becoming one of the most explosive playmakers in college football. It's unclear whether he would have broken wide receiver John Ross' 40-yard dash record of 4.22 seconds, but he's quick and elusive enough to become a game-breaking presence in the NFL.

Williams made his remarks during an introductory press conference that also welcomed ex-Michigan defensive end Aidan Hutchinson, who went No. 2 overall in the NFL draft.

The Lions had the Rams' first-round pick (No. 32) by virtue of last year's Matthew Stafford trade, but they traded that pick, No. 34 and No. 66 overall to the Minnesota Vikings for Nos. 12 and 46.

Now Williams is aboard, and he could be lighting up Ford Field sooner rather than later. He spoke with James Palmer of NFL Network a month ago and offered an encouraging update on his recovery.

NFL Network @nflnetwork

.<a href="https://twitter.com/AlabamaFTBL?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@AlabamaFTBL</a> WR Jameson Williams tells <a href="https://twitter.com/JamesPalmerTV?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@JamesPalmerTV</a> he is “ahead of schedule” after his ACL injury and expects to be fully cleared physically before the start of training camp. <a href="https://t.co/PT0H3ZIoel">pic.twitter.com/PT0H3ZIoel</a>

Williams also told Armando Salguero of OutKick that he ran a 40-yard dash recently and timed in the 4.4 range.

The ex-Alabama star will try to turn around a Lions team that went 3-13-1 last season. Detroit fought hard under first-year head coach Dan Campbell, though, and an infusion of talent this offseason could lead to brighter days in Detroit.