Mike Williams to Patriots: Latest Trade Details, Comments and Reaction

Alec Nathan@@AlecBNathanFeatured ColumnistAugust 25, 2015

Detroit Lions tackle Michael Williams (73) lines up on the line of scrimmage against the New York Jets during the first half of an NFL preseason football game, Thursday, Aug. 13, 2015, in Detroit. (AP Photo/Paul Sancya)
Paul Sancya/Associated Press

The New England Patriots made a move to shore up their offensive line depth Tuesday by acquiring offensive tackle Mike Williams from the Detroit Lions, according to the Boston Globe's Ben Volin.

ESPN.com's Field Yates reported the Patriots will send a seventh-round pick "in a future year" to the Lions in exchange for Williams.

Volin noted the Patriots had been eyeing Williams since last season, when the defending Super Bowl champions attempted to sign him to their practice squad. 

The former seventh-round pick played tight end at Alabama, but Detroit announced it was converting Williams to offensive tackle prior to the 2014 campaign. Despite that conversion, Volin noted Williams wore No. 74 during warmups prior to practice, but switched his number to 85 and began working with the tight ends.  

The 2013 draftee missed the entirety of his rookie season due to a hand injury and proceeded to spend 2014 on the Lions practice squad as he learned his new position. 

"I just have to stick in there and do and learn like any other young player," Williams told reporters June 11, per ESPN.com's Michael Rothstein. "It's a process I think that I'm almost through right now."

The Detroit Free Press' Dave Birkett broke down the implications of the deal for Detroit while noting it may put seventh-round pick Corey Robinson in a more advantageous position to crack the final roster: 

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On the flip side, Sports Illustrated's Chris Burke provided a look at how Williams' addition could impact New England's depth chart: 

While Williams doesn't project as a starter for the Patriots, he's a skilled athlete who could help New England down the line with some more refinement to his technique. 

At 6'6'' and 304 pounds, Williams has the speed and power necessary to eventually improve an offensive line that ranked 29th in pass blocking last season, according to Pro Football Focus.