Last week, three graduate seniors revealed that they will be pursuing NFL careers now that their college careers are over. On Thursday, William Barnes added his name to that list as he pursues a spot on a professional roster.
Barnes played in 49 games in his five years in Chapel Hill, starting 22 of those spread between right guard, right tackle, left guard and left tackle. Last year, he started thirteen of the team’s fourteen games, grading out as their second worst starting offensive lineman in all three of the major categories on PFF, overall (58.1), run blocking (55.0) and pass blocking (57.2). This year, he got the chance to start at left tackle in the season opener, but was quickly shifted out of that role for the now departed Diego Pounds. He would still manage to start seven other games for the Tar Heels despite grading out as the worst offensive lineman to play a single snap in overall grade (49.4) and run blocking (49.2) and second-worst in pass blocking (40.7).
As expected, Barnes does not appear anywhere on draft boards and has the most work to do of the four graduate players pursuing the professional to make a roster. His versatility and high star rating coming out of high school might intrigue some NFL scouts, but only if he blows them away in the pre-draft process.