Patriots' Joejuan Williams getting reps at safety

The New England Patriots drafted Joejuan Williams as a cornerback last year. Now he’s working with the safeties.

NFL Network’s Mike Giardi reported Friday that Williams has been taking meetings with the safety group and has been seen regularly working with that unit during Patriots practices.

Moving Williams to safety could help cover the hole left by Patrick Chung opting out of the 2020 season. At 6-foot-3, Williams’ size could be an asset at safety, where he could help against bigger tight ends.

During his rookie season, the former 2nd-round-pick appeared in nine regular-season games, playing just 77 total snaps on defense, per Next Gen Stats, while seeing 82 plays on special teams.

The Pats added Adrian Phillips and second-round pick Kyle Duggar as safeties this offseason, but given the multiple-safety schemes Bill Belichick uses, adding Williams to the mix could prove beneficial.

At the very least, cross-training Williams at safety would allow the young defensive back more opportunities to see the field. In a season of uncertainty, where position groups have the chance to be decimated by COVID-19 for weeks at a time, players who can play multiple spots could provide even more benefit than a normal year.

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