Coverage - Has the ability to fill multiple roles in coverage including man, deep zones and split zones. Doesn’t have the most natural route anticipation skills and he can be a tick late working into throwing lanes. Has the upside to be a matchup-neutralizer against flex tight ends in man coverage.
Tackling - Is a heat-seeking missile attacking downhill against the run. Sees open windows and easily fills them. Has good contact power. Aims low, wraps up and runs his feet through his target.
Processing - Rapidly diagnoses run plays and quick game. Has some hesitation in coverage picking up and anticipating routes to his zone. Does well to function as force player and slow play boundary runs.
Ball Skills - Ball finds him quite a bit and he doesn’t have the natural anticipation skills to routinely position himself to make plays on the ball. Tardy responses in zone coverage takeaway chances to drive on the football.
Range - Gets a quick jump on plays, takes proper angles and has good enough speed to cover ground. Likely better suited for split zones but can work in single high. Plays forward well.
Physicality - Gets a quick jump on plays, takes proper angles and has good enough speed to cover ground. Likely bet- ter suited for split zones but can work in single high. Plays forward well.
Play Speed - Has adequate play speed but is not a burner. Capable of carrying routes into space in man and staying over top in deeper zones. Possess strong closing speed to cover distance. Speeding up his processing skills in zone coverage is needed.
Flexibility - Has some tightness in his hips that is exposed when tasked with flipping and running. Plays upright with little bend. Feet are smooth and balanced, and he cleanly clicks and closes.
Versatility - Projects favorably to split zones, situational assignments in the slot and box duties. Single high looks would not be the optimal usage. Terrific run defender and he should be a quality contributor on special teams.
BEST TRAIT - Tackling
WORST TRAIT - Zone Coverage
RED FLAGS - None
A two-year starter for Michigan State, Willis is renown for his football character and leadership. What makes Willis so appealing is his coverage versatility, tackling and ability to attack forward. His specialty is man coverage against tight ends, short zones and firing downhill. With that said, his zone coverage skills are a work in progress as he can be tardy to work into throwing lanes and his ball skills fail to impress. Willis should be a valuable option in sub packages right away while helping on special teams but he has the upside to start in time.
Round Grade - Early/Mid Day Three