2014 DRAFT GUIDE
Williams putting stamp on Rams' defense

    2014-06-17 18:41

(Eds: Updates. With AP Photos.)
By R.B. FALLSTROM
AP Sports Writer

ST. LOUIS (AP) - Gregg Williams kept saying how much fun he was having, how happy he was to be coaching in his home state, how great players have responded to his high-decibel leadership.

The 91-degree heat that pushed St. Louis Rams players Tuesday gave their new defensive coordinator even more reason to smile.

''You need this,'' Williams said. ''We're going to wish for mild days like this once we get into August in the Midwest.''

The 55-year-old Williams is well into his second stint with coach Jeff Fisher and he's been a vocal presence at workouts the last two weeks. Players, especially the rookies, don't want to get him riled.

''You need someone that is going to help you chase perfection, knowing that it will never be caught but in the process excellence will be achieved,'' said cornerback Lamarcus Joyner, a second-round pick from Florida State's national title team.

''You need people like that in the driver's seat.''

Williams was much more subdued last season when he returned from a one-year suspension as a senior defensive assistant with the Titans. The job description with the Rams restores the voice.

Williams is his own man, announcing the day he was hired that practices would be different. Within the rules of course, he cultivates the image of outlier.

Reporters were told the rest of the coaching staff had to feel some relief when players arrived earlier this month and he'd move on to ''stressing'' someone else. He was sure outside linebacker Jo-Lonn Dunbar, who played for him at Tennessee, would assure newcomers that ''I'm not as crazy as everybody thinks I am.''

Offensive coordinator Brian Schottenheimer said Williams is ''very creative'' on play-calling out of fronts that look the same before the ball is snapped. But not a wild man, no.

''I don't think so,'' Schottenheimer said. ''I think he's a great football coach.''

Fisher wanted Williams back to put his stamp on a defense the franchise has stocked largely with first-round draft picks and high-dollar free agents. The Rams had one of the NFL's best pass rushes last year but fell short of expectations on defense overall.

''He's the main voice in the room,'' Fisher said. ''You can see the change, you can see the energy. I've had to back him down just a little bit.''

It's tougher to evaluate players when they're not wearing pads and not hitting.

''Pads are the great equalizer,'' middle linebacker James Laurinaitis said.

Williams has compensated by making them think on the fly and barking orders and admonishments from the sideline. He believes a good practice should be ''organized chaos,'' with wrinkles thrown in to keep everybody on their toes.

''We constantly are throwing things out at them that we don't even talk about in meetings,'' Williams said. ''Everybody can con themselves through relaxed states of mind. But you can't fake stress, and that's what the games are.''

Training camp isn't until late July, and Williams is already raring to go, ready to lead the Rams into it. Getting forced to the sidelines in 2012 remains a driving force.

''There's definitely a culture shock,'' Laurinaitis said. ''He demands your all-out effort.''

Williams arrived at Rams Park with a list of 101 things to do. With two OTAs remaining, he was proud to say every box had already been checked.

''This is fun. Last year was really good and this year will be really better,'' Williams said. ''There's a lot to get caught up and the buck stops with me.''

---

Online:

AP NFL website: www.pro32.ap.org and www.twitter.com/AP-NFL

Fantasy Football Player Notes RSS FeedPLAYER NOTES

Adrian PetersonApr 16 02:22p

Minnesota Vikings RB Adrian Peterson has been informed that he will be reinstated from the commissioner exempt list starting Friday, April 17.

Sammy WatkinsApr 15 11:33p

Buffalo Bills WR Sammy Watkins (hip) is able to work out in some capacity during the team's offseason program, although head coach Rex Ryan indicated Wednesday, April 15, that [ More ]

Kai ForbathApr 15 10:53p

Washington Redskins restricted free-agent PK Kai Forbath posted on social media Wednesday, April 15, that he has re-signed with the team. The club has not yet confirmed the signing.

George JohnsonApr 15 08:33a

Detroit Lions DE George Johnson was acquired by the Tampa Bay Buccaneers Wednesday, April 15. Tampa signed Johnson to an offer sheet that was disputed by Detroit, but the [ More ]

Philip RiversApr 15 12:13a

San Diego Chargers QB Philip Rivers is under contract for one more season, and he has expressed a desire to play out his deal. However, the Chargers might be [ More ]

Josh GordyApr 14 06:03p

Free-agent CB Josh Gordy (Colts) signed a veteran minimum deal with the New York Giants Tuesday, April 14, according to a source.

Ricardo LocketteApr 14 05:23p

Seattle Seahawks WR Ricardo Lockette signed his exclusive-rights tender Tuesday, April 14.

Ike TaylorApr 14 09:32a

Free-agent CB Ike Taylor (Steelers) announced his retirement Tuesday, April 14.

Wade SmithApr 14 02:12a

Free-agent OG Wade Smith (Eagles) announced his retirement after 12 years in the National Football League.

Michael CrabtreeApr 14 01:13a

The Oakland Raiders are giving free-agent WR Michael Crabtree (49ers) a one-year, $3 million deal with another $2 million in incentives, a source said Monday, April 13.

Eben BrittonApr 14 01:03a

Free-agent OT Eben Britton (Bears) has been suspended four games by the NFL for an unspecified violation.

Matt ForteApr 13 08:02p

Chicago Bears RB Matt Forte was not present for the start of the offseason workouts Monday, April 13, according to sources. Forte is entering the final year of his [ More ]

Cody LatimerApr 13 08:02p

Denver Broncos WR Cody Latimer, who is expected to line up across from WR Demaryius Thomas in 2015, has been praised by WR Emmanuel Sanders, who figures to move [ More ]

Joe MaysApr 13 04:32p

Free-agent LB Joe Mays (Chiefs) signed an undisclosed deal with the New York Jets Monday, April 13.

Zackary BowmanApr 13 02:22p

Free-agent CB Zack Bowman (Giants) signed an undisclosed deal with the Miami Dolphins Monday, April 13.

Sean RichardsonApr 13 02:02p

Green Bay Packers restricted free-agent SS Sean Richardson will remain with the Packers after the team decided to match the one-year, $2.55 million offer he signed with the Oakland Raiders, according to a source.

Sean RichardsonApr 12 10:02a

Green Bay Packers restricted free-agent SS Sean Richardson signed an offer sheet with the Oakland Raiders, and the Packers have until Monday, April 13, to inform him if they [ More ]

Jason CampbellApr 12 07:02a

Free-agent QB Jason Campbell (Bengals) is considering retirement, according to sources close to the team. Campbell has rejected multiple opportunities to sign a contract for 2015, including offers from [ More ]

James CaseyApr 11 01:02p

Free-agent TE James Casey (Eagles) agreed to terms on a one-year deal with the Denver Broncos Saturday, April 11. Financial terms were not disclosed.

Johnny ManzielApr 11 12:22p

Cleveland Browns QB Johnny Manziel has been released from his rehab facility.

Victor ButlerApr 10 03:22p

New York Giants LB Victor Butler has been suspended for the first four games of the 2015 season for violating the NFL's policy on performance enhancing drugs.

Anthony SpencerApr 10 01:12p

Free-agent DE Anthony Spencer (Cowboys) signed a one-year deal with the New Orleans Saints Friday, April 10. Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed.

Charles TillmanApr 9 04:02p

Free-agent CB Charles Tillman (Bears) signed a one-year deal with the Carolina Panthers Thursday, April 9. Terms of the contract were not disclosed.

Rob HouslerApr 9 12:42p

Free-agent TE Rob Housler (Cardinals) has agreed to terms with the Cleveland Browns on a one-year deal, according to a source. Financial terms were not disclosed.

Le'Veon BellApr 9 09:52a

Pittsburgh Steelers RB Le'Veon Bell was suspended three games and fined an additional game check after violating the league's substance abuse policy, according to league sources. He has appealed.

Stevan RidleyApr 8 07:53p

New York Jets RB Stevan Ridley signed a one-year deal with the team.

Amobi OkoyeApr 8 04:53p

Dallas Cowboys DT Amobi Okoye was released Wednesday, April 8.

Emmanuel LamurApr 8 03:43p

Cincinnati Bengals LB Emmanuel Lamur officially re-signed Wednesday, April 8, to a one-year, $2.356 million deal.

Adrian PetersonApr 8 01:33p

Minnesota Vikings RB Adrian Peterson is 'highly unlikely' to face more suspension from the league when he's finally off the Commissioner's Exempt List, according to a source. Peterson's next [ More ]

George JohnsonApr 7 10:23p

The Tampa Bay Buccaneers signed restricted free-agent DE George Johnson (Lions) to a three-year offer sheet Tuesday, April 7. Financial terms are undisclosed. The Lions have five days to match the offer.

Le'Veon BellApr 7 05:23p

Pittsburgh Steelers RB Le'Veon Bell is expected to be suspended for the first two games of next season, according to sources. Bell is being suspended following an arrest last [ More ]

Erin HendersonApr 7 05:13p

Free-agent LB Erin Henderson (Vikings) agreed to terms on an undisclosed deal with the New York Jets Tuesday, April 7, according to a source. Henderson didn't play last year [ More ]

RSS Feeds

NFL News:
 
Player Notes:
 
Forum Posts:
 

© 2015 RealTime Fantasy Sports, Inc.
Email Us  ·  Call Us 636.447.1170  ·  Lost Password
Advertising represented by USA Today Sports Media Group