I’m happy I got picked by the Saints because I feel like that’s where I need to be and I’m happy that’s where I got called. —Marcus Williams
SALT LAKE CITY — Utah safety Marcus Williams didn’t hold back when asked about being taken by the New Orleans Saints in the second round (42nd overall) of the National Football League draft.
“It’s really amazing and I can’t wait to get out there and start this new journey in my life,” said Williams, who also told the New Orleans media on a teleconference that he was so excited that it was difficult to talk. “But I’m happy I got picked by the Saints because I feel like that’s where I need to be and I’m happy that’s where I got called.”
Williams played three seasons at Utah, opting to leave for the NFL with one year of collegiate eligibility remaining. The Corona, California product finished with career totals of 189 tackles, 19 passes defended and 11 interceptions. He was a two-time All-Pac-12 honoree.
Utah defensive coordinator and safeties coach Morgan Scalley said the Saints are getting “a very, very talented athlete” with great range and unbelievable ball skills. He added that Williams has really not reached his ceiling.
Scalley noted that Williams is now able to start adding weight effectively to his to his 6-foot-1 frame. He’s gone from 191 to 202 pounds since the season ended.
“I’m just excited because his best football is ahead of him and he’s a really talented football player,” Scalley said. “But even more, he’s a great kid. A great young man that does everything you ask him. Everything matters to him. The way he warms up. The way he stretches. The way he studies film. If I had 10 of him I’d be a really, really, really good coach.”
Seeing players like Williams move on to the next level, Scalley acknowledged, is rewarding.
“It is, especially when they’re great kids and they’ve put everything they have into our program and they care,” Scalley said. “I’m just excited for him because I know not only is he going to make them a better football team, but he’ll make them a better organization.”
That, he explained, is because of the kind of person that Williams is on and off the field.
“He’ll serve the community. He’ll be a role model for the young people of New Orleans,” Scalley said. “And they’re just getting a great human being.”
Williams is the third player in Utah history to be drafted by New Orleans. The Saints selected tight end Henry Lusk in 1996 and linebacker Filipo Mokofisi in 1986.
This year’s NFL draft concludes Saturday with rounds four through seven.
On Thursday, Utah offensive lineman Garett Bolles was the first-round choice of the Denver Broncos. He was the 20th overall pick in the draft.