You don't need to be someone that studies the all-22 film to know that Notre Dame needs some warm bodies at safety.
You could just use your ears and hear the opposing team's band playing every time a guy got deep against Notre Dame during the second half of the season. Or you could read the box score and see that Cody Kessler lit up the Irish for six touchdowns through the air in an embarrassing loss. Or you could look at the potential depth chart next fall and do the math that Notre Dame doesn't have enough players to compete if they have anything close to the terrible injuries that decimated them at the position in 2014.
Yes, Notre Dame needs to sign some safeties and the Irish coaching staff recognized this awhile ago and has been trying to add to the two safeties, Prentice McKinney and Nico Fertitta, that have been committed to the Irish for some time with several offers. Unfortunately, none of them seemed like anything close to a certainty to sign with ND in February. Now that McKinney sounds like he is far from a certainty as well, the need has become even greater.
That's one reason why Irish fans should be excited about safety Mykelti Williams committing to Notre Dame last week. The main reason why they should be excited though is the fact that the Warren Central (IN) product has the talent and potential to develop into a very good player at the next level.
What I love about Williams' game is his versatility. He shows the ability to make plays in coverage equally as well as he does versus the run. I picked out two great examples of both that show what kind of playmaker he can be.
The first is him in coverage.
That's Williams spotlighted as the deep safety in the middle of the field with the ball on the right hash.
Williams immediately drops to his right and can see the quarterback staring down where he wants to go with the football. This makes him open up and to get all the way where he needs to be.
The receiver comes into clear view now and he's got the corner beat deep. Williams needs to get there to help out over top.
THAT is some outstanding closing speed. He makes up an incredible amount of ground to even get a shot at making the play.
Tough to tell from this last one, but he finished off the play with an interception. That's just a big time play for any free safety to make in coverage.
He can make plays like that deep down the field and here's a look at him making plays behind the line of scrimmage.
4th and short in an obvious run situation. You can see Williams creeping up to the line.
Now it's obvious. He's selling out against the run.
Williams shoots the gap and makes the tackle in the backfield. That's a game changing type of play and couldn't be more different than the play he made in coverage.
That's what I love about watching Williams' senior film. He makes a ton of impact plays in a variety of ways. Everything I see from his skill set suggest he could develop into a deep safety or an in the box thumper if that is what is required of him. If Notre Dame experience any kind of injury situation at the position similar to this season, that athletic versatility could end up being extremely valuable down the road.
There might be some concern that Williams wasn't exactly the first offer at safety for the Irish, but after watching his film, I believe he was the right offer to make and I'm excited he accepted.