Jon Gruden: Quinnen Williams the reason why Jets have No. 1 rush defense

Josh Alper

The Jets made defensive tackle Quinnen Williams the third overall pick of this year’s draft in hopes that he’d improve the defense by acting as a playmaker on their defensive front.

A look at Williams’s numbers might call into question his playmaking ability. He has 1.5 sacks and two tackles for loss so far this season, but this weekend’s opponent sees where Williams has improved the Jets defense.

Williams draws double-teams often and Raiders head coach Jon Gruden believes the attention paid to him has helped the Jets become the top-ranked run defense in the league.

“They’re the No. 1 rushing defense in football and he’s the reason why,” Gruden said, via Newsday. “He’s healthy and moving around much better than he did earlier in the season. There’s a lot of stuff you got to learn in your first year in the NFL, especially when you play for Gregg Williams. It looks like he’s playing with a lot more confidence, energy. He’s a force in there. It’ll be a challenge for us.”

The Jets have been far less successful stopping the pass, which may also explain why the team isn’t yielding much on the ground but Gruden’s comments suggest either answer will still result in a lot of attention being paid to Williams come Sunday.