Sylvester Williams became the latest of a long line of Carolina defensive lineman to make the leap to the NFL tonight, as he was drafted 28th by the Denver Broncos.
Williams' story has been getting a lot of press lately, with good reason. He didn't discover football until his senior year of high school, after which he went to work making radiators for semis. He found his way to community college, where he walked onto the football team. Two years later he had major college programs salivating over him, and he chose to head to Chapel Hill to help shore up a defense that lost a lot of personnel to NCAA violations.
Williams started immediately at Carolina, and had a good first season lining up next to now-New York Jet Quinton Coples, often getting sacks in a system where UNC would rush only three players. That being said, he became less prominent in the second half of that season, and when new head coach Larry Fedora brought arrived that winter, one of his first complaints was that Williams needed to lose thirty pounds. Williams promptly did just that, and spent his senior season tearing through opposing offensive lines. Williams had five sacks and eleven solo tackles for a loss, and became famous around campus for his time in the weight room. He was critical in wins against Virginia Tech and Virginia. His play earned him All-ACC honors, and he should do well in the pros.
Wiliams becomes the third straight UNC defensive lineman to be drafted in the first round, joining Coples and Robert Quinn. For more on Williams from a NFL perspective, check out his SBNation draft profile.