Caleb Williams is a human highlight reel. We saw him at USC for two seasons and watched him dazzle us with his flair for improvisation and his knack for sensing pressure in the pocket. So many times, he made something out of nothing. He found a creative angle in which to throw the ball. He turned good pass rushers into desperate, frustrated chasers.
Caleb Williams sealed the 2022 Heisman Trophy with his masterful performance against Notre Dame. A good Irish defense with tough and proven defensive linemen did not play horribly, but Caleb was able to elude pass rushers all night long with his sixth sense in the pocket. The Irish simply could not bring him down, and Caleb bought time before making a surgical downfield pass. USC hammered the Irish and notched their 11th win of the 2022 season, clinching a New Year’s Six bowl berth. That was the best of Caleb Williams. A few weeks later, he lifted the Heisman in New York.
In 2023, Caleb still had his moments, particularly the 42-point showing against eventual Pac-12 champion and national runner-up Washington. However, we also saw more plays in which trying to make a brilliant play led to a fumble. Williams didn’t throw the short checkdown. He didn’t make the simple play. He tried to do too much. This is the risk-reward tension for Caleb, and it’s what NFL teams need to evaluate heading into the 2024 NFL draft.