The Denver Broncos didn’t let Day 2 go on for long before they traded the 40th and 114th overall selections to the Atlanta Falcons for pick 35 and Atlanta’s sixth-round selection so they could pounce on their target — running back Javonte Williams out of North Carolina.
The pick was announced by, member of the Broncos Ring of Fame and legendary safety, Billy Thompson.
Javontae Williams was almost unanimously viewed as one of the top three running backs in this year’s draft class, and with Travis Etienne and Najee Harris going off the board last night, Williams was the last one on the board.
This selection follows a trend for George Paton dating back to his time with the Minnesota Vikings of consistently investing in the running back on either Day 1 or Day 2 of the draft. In fact, while working alongside Rick Spielman in Minnesota, the Vikings never took a running back outside the NFL draft’s first three rounds.
NFL Network’s lead draft analyst, Daniel Jeremiah, praised Williams for his ability to remain balanced through contact and for how polished he is in the passing game both as a blocker and as a receiver.
“It’s a no-nonsense style,” Jeremiah said of Williams’ running style. “It’s a yard sale when [defenders] hit him with equipment flying all over the place. He is a physical, violent runner.”
Jeremiah also compared Williams to Cleveland Brown superstar Nick Chubb, who was also selected inside the top three picks of the second day of the draft.
If the Broncos get the same value out of Williams that the Browns got out of Chubb, this pick could shape up to be a great one.