“They told me how interested they were in me and that they hope and pray I was there at pick 38 because at pick 38, I’d be a Cardinal,” Williams said.
“I’m not sure if they told anybody else that … but they were men of their word and I really, really respect that. I trust them with everything, because they said what they were going to do.”
That’s what the Cards did, taking Williams in the second round. It was still a surprise considering the Cardinals have bigger needs at linebacker, offensive line and tight end, among other spots.
Coach Ken Whisenhunt and general manager Rod Graves weren't sure that's exactly how it went down with Williams, who said offensive coordinator Mike Miller, defensive coordinator Ray Horton, tight ends coach Freddie Kitchens and director of player personnel Steve Keim were among those with him.
He goes from one loaded backfield to another. The Cardinals already have 2009 No. 1 pick
“I know it’s a crowded backfield, but I will do my best to get on the field and help this team win,” Williams said.
Hightower, whose contract has expired, has had fumbling issues. Wells has yet to consistently play like the Cardinals had hoped. Then again, the Cards said they wanted to push to take best player available, and given Williams’ pre-draft anecdote, that’s what they did.
He came out for the draft early anyway, saying he was effective once he returned from the injury and that his overall statistics didn’t show what kind of player he was anyway.
Pro Football Weekly actually said one of Williams’ negatives was that he “runs too hard.”
“I don’t think that should be a negative,” Williams said. “I think the softer you play, the more liable you are to get hurt. Especially as a running back.
“You have to go hard every play and if you don’t go hard every play, you shouldn’t be playing running back. My negative about running too hard is that I hate going down … but as far as running too hard, that isn’t a negative.”
Williams shrugged off a slow 40 time at the combine, saying he plays faster. The Cardinals, he said, recognized that.
“This is all I ever wanted to do my whole life,” Williams said. “Everything just came out. Those were all the emotions since I was 7 or 8 years old when I had it planned out I wanted to be in the NFL.”