D'haquille Williams continues to unsurprisingly move back up the Auburn depth chart since missing preseason practices.
Auburn head coach Gus Malzahn said Saturday the Tigers leading returning receiver from last season has been elevated to the second team offensive unit in practice leading many to believe he’ll be ready to contribute heavily in the season opener against Louisville on Sept 5 in Atlanta.
Auburn conducted a 30-play scrimmage Saturday in Jordan-Hare Stadium mostly for the backups and younger players in the program and then moved to the indoor facility to start practice preparations for the Louisville matchup.
“He’s been working with the two’s this week and he’s responded well,” Malzahn said Saturday when asked about Williams. “He’s had some good practices.”
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When asked if his return to the Tigers two-deep in practice sessions may signal Williams could be starting or get significant playing time in the Chick-fil-A Kickoff Game in the Georgia Dome, Malzahn left his answer with a very vague “we’ll see” response.
“We’ll see where it goes,” Malzahn said. “He’s like everybody else, you prove it every day in practice. We’ll see as it gets closer to the game.”
Williams returned to the team on Aug. 13 after missing six practices with what Malzahn referred to as “a discipline issue” and has been working his way up the depth chart since Malzahn said the senior wide receiver was placed on the scout team following his first practice back.
“The good thing is we got a lot of receivers that we feel very good about,” Malzahn said last week. “Ricardo Louis is a guy that has really done a good job in fall camp. Melvin Ray has done a solid job. Those are our two seniors, along with Jonathan Wallace and we’re relying on those guys for leadership.”
Williams, a 224-pound receiver, is projected to be a high pick in the 2016 NFL Draft according to many scouts and media services. Williams was suspended from the 2015 Outback Bowl loss to Wisconsin due to what the school would only call a violation of team rules. According to reports, Williams posted a picture to Instagram showing what appeared to be an unconfirmed injury to his left eye. During the spring practice season, Williams posted some messages on Twitter in May leading many to speculate he was interested looking to transfer from the program. He later deleted those tweets in the same day he posted them.