Williams Making Another Pitch For PT

The fifth-year cornerback has three interceptions in his last two practices.

Posted by Ryan Mink on Sunday, August 7th, 2011 at 10:06 am | Categories: 2011 Training Camp, Ryan Mink

Cornerback Cary Williams was one of the most impressive Ravens players last preseason.

Given extra playing time when Domonique Foxworth went down with a knee injury, he shined in practice then logged interceptions in the team’s first two preseason games.

A two-game suspension to start the year hurt his chances of seeing the field immediately, however, and Williams spent most of his season on special teams.

The fifth-year cover man is making another strong bid for playing time this preseason.

He has three interceptions in his last two training camp practices, including one in Saturday’s session at M&T Bank Stadium.

“All he’s done is make plays since he’s been here,” Defensive Coordinator Chuck Pagano said afterwards. “Anybody who plays like he’s playing and plays like a Raven, we’ll get him on the field.”

Starting in Week 3, Williams played in every game except one. He became an excellent gunner on special teams and in kickoff coverage, and even caught a fake punt pass for a first down against the Miami Dolphins.

But he saw limited time on defense. Williams finished the year with six tackles and was occasionally brought in as a corner late in games or when there was an injury. He said he doesn’t know what his role will be this year.

“It just depends on whatever they want to put me at,” he said. “Whatever role they decide to play me at, I’m just going to roll with it this year.”

The Ravens have considerable depth at cornerback. Not only is Foxworth returning, but they re-signed Chris Carr (who wants a starting role), returned third-year man Lardarius Webb and drafted first-rounder Jimmy Smith, whose long frame is similar to Williams (6-1, 190).

Pagano still envisions a spot for Williams. He said a lot of teams these days will line up three wide receivers, then have an athletic tight end or two going out for passes, plus a scatback coming out of the backfield.

“There’s going to be ample opportunities to get him in the game and get him matched up,” Pagano said.

“When you make plays day after day, down after down, your confidence builds. He knows we trust him, he knows we believe in him. Now it’s just a matter of going out there and doing it.”

Williams has been particularly adept at shutting down passes to the outside. His break on the ball, long arms and solid hands have led to the three practice picks and was the reason he got to rookie Tyrod Taylor’s pass on Saturday.

He also broke up two consecutive passes in the end zone during red zone drills, and made a simulated touchdown-saving tackle by pushing receiver Anquan Boldin out of bounds.

“That’s just me playing football. There wasn’t nothing to it,” Williams said. “I’ve just got to go out there, stack good practice on top of good practice.”

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