5 prospects make debuts

Five new senior prospects, led by Virginia Tech C Jake Grove, make their debuts in my rankings of the Top 25 prospects for the 2004 NFL draft.

Updated: October 24, 2003, 3:38 PM ET
By Mel Kiper Jr. | Special to ESPN Insider
BIG BOARD: Kiper's Top 25 senior NFL prospects | Oct. 15
Five new prospects, led by Virginia Tech C Jake Grove, make their debuts in my rankings of the Top 25 prospects for the 2004 NFL draft:

1. Roy Williams, WR, Texas (6-4, 213) | previous ranking: same
Williams is a brilliant talent who has excelled this season despite a lack of consistent quarterback play (33 catches, 14.7 yards per catch, five TDs). Texas runs a conservative offense that isn't especially sophisticated in its passing schemes. I expect Williams to hold on to the top spot on my Big Board throughout the draft process. Depending on the juniors who declare early for the draft, he might drop -- but he'll likely remain in the top three overall. There's no question that Williams is the best senior prospect in the nation (and remember, until juniors actually declare after the season is done, I don't rank them). So Williams remains the clear No. 1.

A superb athlete with great size, he averaged 17.8 yards per catch with 12 TDs in 2002, when he returned to the all-world form he displayed as a freshman after slipping somewhat as a sophomore (when he averaged just 12.5 yards per catch). If Williams had declared for the 2003 draft, he likely would have been an overall top 10-15 pick and the third receiver off the board, behind Michigan State's Charles Rogers and Miami's Andre Johnson.

Mel Kiper Jr.

Football analyst

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