Caleb Williams’ father hints star QB could return to USC in 2024 if NFL Draft is ‘not a good situation’

USC quarterback and reigning Heisman Trophy winner Caleb Williams is widely viewed as one of the top prospects for the 2024 NFL Draft, but a departure for the pros after the 2023 campaign might be less certain than some make it out to be. Williams’ father, Carl, recently voiced his qualms with the NFL Draft process and hinted that a return to the Trojans in 2024 could very well be on the table for his son if the draft pecking order threatens to put him in an unfavorable situation. 

“The funky thing about the NFL draft process is, he’d almost be better off not being drafted than being drafted first,” Williams said in an interview with GQ Sports. “The system is completely backwards. The way the system is constructed, you go to the worst possible situation. The worst possible team, the worst organization in the league—because of their desire for parity—gets the first pick. So it’s the gift and the curse.” 

Caleb plays for one of college football’s premier quarterback developers, USC coach Lincoln Riley, but even some of Riley’s previous success stories have struggled in the NFL — notably, former No. 1 overall picks Baker Mayfield and Kyler Murray, both Heisman winners under Riley at Oklahoma. And as far as money is concerned, Williams has had no shortage of NIL opportunities come his way since arriving at USC. 

“I mean, I’ve talked to Archie Manning — his career was shot because he went to a horrible organization,” the elder Williams added. “I’ve talked to Lincoln, and Kyler struggled because of where he was drafted [by the Arizona Cardinals]. Baker struggled mightily because of where he was drafted [by the Cleveland Browns]. The organizations matters. … He’s got two shots at the apple. So if there’s not a good situation, the truth is, he can come back to school.”

Though it won’t be clear which franchise is first to pick in the 2024 NFL Draft until the spring, it’s worth noting that a quarterback has gone first off the board in seven of the past nine drafts. Ex-Alabama quarterback and 2021 Heisman winner Bryce Young most recently went No. 1 overall to the Carolina Panthers during the 2023 NFL Draft.

Mahomes 2.0? 

It’s clear as day that Williams has the talent to be a star at the next level if put in the right position. He took over starting duties mid-season in 2021 as a true freshman at Oklahoma before passing for 4,537 yards and 42 touchdowns while rushing for an additional 382 yards and 10 touchdowns after transferring to USC in 2022. 

Williams’ ability to improvise has earned him many comparisons to Kansas City Chiefs quarterback and two-time Super Bowl champion Patrick Mahomes. Some individuals, including former USC star running back Reggie Bush, view Williams as an even more dangerous version of Mahomes given the speed that Williams brings to the table. 

“The thing that I think is different between Caleb and Patrick is, Caleb is an explosive athlete,” Bush told GQ Sports. “He’s an explosive runner with the football. Mahomes is not an explosive runner with the football. Mahomes is creative, he’s crafty, he’ll buy some time, he’ll get you a first down—but Caleb can take it to the house.”

Williams has helped guide USC to 2-0 start with wins over San Jose State and Nevada. The Trojans went 11-3 in 2022, reaching the Pac-12 Championship Game but falling to Utah. Should Williams end up staying put in Los Angeles in 2024, he would join USC in its first season as a member of the Big Ten. 

Source link

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *