New Birds CB Hopes Philly Is Setting For Comeback Story
During his introductory press conference, new Eagles cornerback Greedy Williams characterized his clean slate as a necessary “refresh” and “restart.”
Williams’ reboot reference, of course, was an allusion to his turbulent four-year stint in Cleveland, which were often marred by detours.
He missed the entire 2020 season due to a nerve injury in his shoulder and was limited to just 11 games last season. He appeared in a total of 39 games (21 starts) for the Browns.
The 25-year-old cornerback didn’t mince words when asked how he would summarize his Browns tenure.
“I’d say rocky a little bit,” Williams admitted Tuesday. “Just the up and down years, and things like that. It’s been a lot of up and down with me.”
Williams, a two-time first-team All-SEC performer at LSU, arrived in Cleveland four years ago via the No. 46 overall pick in the 2019 NFL Draft, expected to revive a Browns secondary that had allowed the eighth-most passing yards (4,125) the previous season.
While Williams’ career course was ultimately altered, amid the mounting injuries and volatile production, the LSU standout discussed his remedy to remain even-keel and cope with those trying times.
“Prayer, family,” Williams said. “Family with great support. It happens. It’s in the game. But I’m passed that, man. I’m excited, I think I feel good. Everything’s just a refresh and a restart.”
The newest addition to an already formidable cornerback contingent, Williams wasn’t brought in to challenge starters Darius Slay and James Bradberry for a spot atop the team’s cornerback hierarchy.
Their respective positions on the depth chart are uncontested.
Barring something unforeseen in the personnel deployment of newly appointed defensive coordinator Sean Desai, Williams will be in the running for the fourth slot in the pecking order, where he is expected to contend with – among others – third-year pro Zech McPhearson.
For reference, the latter played only 99 snaps last season.
But Williams, who prioritized a winning culture and competitiveness atop his free-agent destination requirements, made it clear he is willing to help the team in any capacity.
“Whatever way I can,” Williams said. “That’s why I came here. Whatever way I can. I’m here just to bring what I got.”
The lengthy cornerback projects as a viable, upside-laden depth piece with starting experience, someone who can adequately step in and provide snaps on the perimeter in a pinch.
Though bound to be relegated to a reserve role in Philadelphia, Williams will have the luxury of learning behind perhaps the game’s most prolific cornerback tandem.
And if Williams plays to his potential and exceeds those expectations tempered by his one-year prove-it deal, he will have helped the Eagles find a suitable, in-house replacement for the post-Slay/Bradberry era.
As for Williams, he has already identified the blueprint for his success in his new surroundings.
“By staying on the field, and performance, and doing what I need to do to make the team win,” he said. “So, that’s kind of where my mindset is at.”
– Andrew DiCecco (@AndrewDiCecco) is a Staff Reporter/Content Producer for InsideTheBirds.com.
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