Thursday, May 23, 2024

Several NFL Scouts Question Caleb Williams’ Toughness And Leadership

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The Chicago Bears are about to make a momentous decision on April 25th. They hold the 1st pick in the draft. Everybody assumes they will take USC star Caleb Williams. It will be the first time spanning over a century in franchise history that the Bears took a quarterback at #1. Most experts agree Williams is the best prospect in this class. His arm strength, accuracy, mobility, and natural playmaking instincts are all top-tier. When put in a position to succeed, he always delivers. It was that way at Oklahoma and again at USC.

People have compared him to the likes of Russell Wilson, Patrick Mahomes, and Aaron Rodgers. Any of those guys would be far and away the best quarterback in Bears history. So if Williams reaches those same heights, the fortunes of this franchise are about to change. However, it appears more than a few people inside the NFL have reservations about the quarterback. According to Dan Pompei of The Athletic, several scouts aren’t sold on Williams between the ears. They fear he doesn’t have the mental toughness or leadership qualities required of an NFL quarterback.

Of the top six prospects at the position in this class, he was rated dead last for intangibles.

Four of the eight scouts rated Williams last overall in immeasurables and three rated him next to last. What should be noted is most of the scouts didn’t speak dogmatically about Williams’ intangibles. Most expressed uncertainty or less certainty than they felt about the others.

Scout 2: “I think his toughness has yet to be determined. He’s had a red-carpet runway experience at every stop and hasn’t had much to overcome. But when you end up sobbing in your mom’s arms after getting beat, that’s a disqualifier for people who aren’t picking in the top few picks.”

Scout 3: “It wasn’t easy trying to get information on him. You had to dig. Everyone tries to protect him, which leads you to wonder what they are trying to hide. If he has been banged up, we don’t know. We saw him take some good hits and come back, though. He’s a little odd and eccentric, and he was difficult to deal with at the combine.”

Scout 8: “He takes hits and gets up, and he’s handled a lot of pressure well. What makes him a four instead of a five for me in toughness is how he shows some disappointment with his body language. He buries his head in a towel and doesn’t always act the way you’d hope after the game.”

Scout 6: “He didn’t handle the season great. I would have liked to have seen him come back strong after the loss to Notre Dame. The season fell apart for them after that. He doesn’t stand in there as much as I’d like.”

Scout 2: “Between series, he wasn’t a guy who went up and down the bench to talk to teammates. They had to come to him. I thought he operated in a bit of a silo. But teammates do speak highly of him.”

These questions aren’t anything new on Caleb Williams.

Plenty of critics have come out saying he is too soft for the NFL. That crying in the arms of his mom incident seemed to rub a lot of people the wrong way. To them, it was a sign of weakness. They don’t like his eccentricities and the fact he’s closed off from more in-depth inspection, even though he’s far from the first player to do something like that. While some of their concerns are valid, it feels like this is an older generation of men not willing to come to terms with a young kid who thinks differently.

It doesn’t seem like the Bears have concerns about it. GM Ryan Poles is notorious for being strict in his evaluation process. He’s not afraid to press players to see where their mental and physical conditioning is. By all accounts, Caleb Williams passed with flying colors. Coaches and teammates rave about him. It’s hard to imagine he would be considered a “generational” prospect if people were that concerned about his ability to lead. This feels like classic pre-draft nitpicking at this point.

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16 COMMENTS

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1985Bears
1985Bears
Apr 18, 2024 9:21 am

All 8 scouts are named Greg Gabriel

Tred
Tred
Apr 17, 2024 5:59 pm

@Mansa Musa – for sure. Whoever the Bears draft, I pray for his success.

I hope you’re right brother. We’ll see.

Mansa Musa
Apr 17, 2024 5:38 pm

Right on !! Keep your faith in Poles, he’s got a plan.

Even if we pick Caleb Williams, It’s still Bear Down no matter what or where, even in Jerry Jones’ town.

Tred
Tred
Apr 17, 2024 4:26 pm

@Mansa Musa – I wish you were right. Honestly, I really do. I’d love to see Poles be this crafty. Sadly, my belief in Poles is slowly eroding. I won’t write all the reasons for that here. Some wouldn’t understand, some wouldn’t care, and some would just be offended without actually bothering to try and comprehend them. Which, I’ll admit, can be a helluva lot of fun. But tell you what. If you’re right, after the draft I’ll be here with a comment for you acknowledging that you were right, and Poles was really shrewder than I gave him credit… Read more »

Mansa Musa
Apr 17, 2024 4:06 pm

@Tred. That’s exactly why I don’t think CW is the pick. He went way overboard with the enthusiasm and media crumbs pointing to the “generational” talent. People may say it’s because he’s the obvious top QB, no brainer, right. Wrong! No one saw Patrick Mahomes and said he was a generational talent. They said he played in an air raid system that required timing and accuracy and wouldn’t translate well to the NFL. So when he fell to the 10th spot, there’s no way he could’ve been labled generational. We can say Pace doesn’t know talent and chose the #1… Read more »

Last edited 1 month ago by Mansa Musa

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