Injuries are a necessary evil to the NFL game. The sport of American football is one that eats its’ young.
It’s an unfortunate part of the game, but with injury comes opportunity.
The phrase has been beaten to death over the years, but it’s true, it’s the next-man-up mentality.
Late in the roster construction process ahead of the NFL season, the New York Jets claimed an interesting linebacker prospect that was more well known as the older brother of Quinnen Williams as opposed to his own merits as a player.
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What an Impressive Starting Debut
Due to an overwhelming amount of injuries to the linebacking corps, the Jets maximized their No. 2 overall waiver wire priority to claim the former Jacksonville Jaguars draft pick, Quincy Williams.
It didn’t take long for him to get plugged into the starting lineup due to more injuries.
This past weekend Quincy not only started at linebacker, but he also played 53 of 58 total snaps, per Ralph Vacchiano of SNY.
Williams got into the lineup because of some extenuating circumstances, but one way he can keep that job is by continuing to make big-time plays.
On a 2nd and 8 play late in the second quarter, New England Patriots’ quarterback Mac Jones dumped off a pass to running back James White and he was immediately met by Williams.
The 25-year-old linebacker laid the lumber down and made a resounding hit that sent the home faithful into a tizzy.
Quincy throughout the early portion of his NFL career didn’t get off to the start he wanted due to injuries. That coupled with the fact his younger brother was much more heralded coming out of college as the No. 3 overall pick in the 2019 NFL draft cast him in the shadow of Quinnen.
Although after his performance in Week 2, Quincy is no longer just Quinnen’s older brother, he is now his own man.
Advanced Metrics Simply Don’t Agree
While Quincy certainly made a name for himself during the Week 2 matchup vs the New England Patriots, not everyone was convinced.
According to PFF, Williams was ranked among the bottom three Jets players coming off of that game (47.2) grade.
The talented linebacker allowed five receptions on five targets for 48 yards. Although it’s worth noting a lot of his coverage grades were skewed by one play in which he gave up 28 yards.
As Kyle Fahey pointed out on Twitter, what he really gave up was four catches for 20 yards. If you wave the magic wand and wipe away the one massive gain, his advanced metrics would’ve been far more impressive.
It wasn’t picture perfect and it’s impossible to please everyone, but I can tell you from the eye test Quincy passed with flying colors. He played with passion and energy that was infectious to not only his teammates but all the fans in attendance at MetLife Stadium.
General manager Joe Douglas promised at his introductory press conference that he would use every vehicle at his disposal to improve the talent of this roster in free agency, trade, the NFL draft, and the waiver wire.
Douglas is certainly a man of his word from that standpoint and it seems like at least early on he has found a keeper at linebacker for the present and future.