Where to play Chris Williams in 2011? That is the question.
Will he get another shot at left tackle, which is where he played the first two games last season and where he was supposed to be entrenched by now after being drafted in the first round (14th overall) in 2008?
Will he remain at left guard, where he started the final 11 games last season? Will he wind up back at right tackle, where he made his first 11 starts at the beginning of the 2009 season before moving to left tackle for the final five games?
Coach Lovie Smith didn’t shed much light on the topic when he was asked recently if Williams played better at tackle in ‘09 or at guard in 2010?
“That would be hard to say,” Smith said. “It's been pretty tough to say for Chris because we haven't been able to lock him in at one position. We made improvement through the course of (2010), when we were able to lock in five guys and keep them there. Chris has moved so much. One of the off-season projects is trying to figure out exactly where to play him, trying to get him there and seeing where he can go from there.”
Williams’ position next season will probably depend on how much and what kind of manpower is added to the offensive line in the draft and free agency.
Having the versatility to play multiple positions can be an asset to an offensive lineman, but it can also be an indication that he hasn’t really established himself at any position.