Caleb Williams' Pro Day Performance Deemed 'Underwhelming' by Dan Orlovsky

Analyzing Caleb Williams' Evolution and Draft Prospects.

by Nouman Rasool
Caleb Williams' Pro Day Performance Deemed 'Underwhelming' by Dan Orlovsky
© Michael Hickey/Getty Images

In the spotlight of the USC pro day, all anticipation was fixated on Caleb Williams, whose decision to forgo the NFL Scouting Combine had heightened expectations. Performing in front of several NFL front offices, including the keen observers from the Chicago Bears, Williams took to the field to showcase his arm strength and accuracy.

However, the showcase did not quite hit the mark for some. ESPN analyst Dan Orlovsky characterized Williams' pro day exhibition as "underwhelming," suggesting the subdued display might have been strategic. Given Williams' reputation for dynamic, off-script plays, the day's simpler approach could have been an attempt by USC to temper expectations.

"It seemed like a restrained performance aimed at critics, given his game tape's brilliance," Orlovsky noted. He appreciated the insights from colleague Luis Riddick about Williams' commendable demeanor and leadership qualities off the field.

With the NFL Draft looming and Williams viewed as the top pick, the Chicago Bears' decision to trade Justin Fields to the Pittsburgh Steelers has left a void at quarterback. Despite some reservations, including those expressed by Orlovsky, indications strongly suggest Williams could be heading to Chicago.

Bears' Deliberation Insights

Orlovsky reflected on the broader implications of the pro day, considering it a glimpse into the Bears' deliberations. "The event underscored the difference in Williams' play from the pocket between the 2022 and 2023 seasons," he said.

The arrival of talents like Biletnikoff Award winner Jordan Addison at USC in 2022 significantly boosted Williams' in-pocket performance, a stark contrast to the challenges faced in 2023 due to issues like a faltering offensive line.

As the Bears ponder over selecting Williams first overall, Orlovsky emphasized the importance of understanding the discrepancies in Williams' collegiate performances. "Reviewing his pro day and USC's past seasons reveals a quarterback who was unequivocally a top pick one year and a question mark the next.

The Bears must discern these variations to ensure they make an informed decision," he concluded, underscoring the complexity of the draft process and the high stakes involved in selecting a franchise quarterback.