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oubronco
05-29-2010, 08:41 AM
Denver feeling a lot like home to Williams

Veteran Jamal Williams welcomes a chance to be the answer on the D-line for once-hated Broncos.

By Jeff Legwold
The Denver Post

Posted: 05/29/2010 01:00:00 AM MDT
Updated: 05/29/2010 01:44:03 AM MDT


He is on the hunt for his first house in Colorado, but Jamal Williams has carried a souvenir from the Broncos for quite some time.

The long, angry-looking scar on his lower left leg is what remains from a low block from former Broncos offensive lineman Steve Herndon that resulted in a dislocated ankle and ended Williams' 2002 season. It's a little bit of his history that brought a smile about the future.

"I was going to put a happy face tattoo right there," Williams said this week. "I think it would have looked good."

Williams is settling in at his new football home, a place that includes a Broncos jersey, of all things. The 13th-year defensive tackle was one of the Broncos' offseason acquisitions as they try to repair a run defense that collapsed down the stretch last season. Denver surrendered at least 173 yards rushing in five of its final nine games.

Williams was a little concerned with how he would be received at his new team's Dove Valley complex after a dozen years with the AFC West rival San Diego Chargers. Then there was the matter of breaking the news to his mother, Harriet.

"The game I hurt my ankle, that was the first one she ever went to in the NFL," Williams said. "I mean, I was young, saved up some money so I could have everybody out for a game I was going to be starting. My mom came. I have six brothers, they came. Had cousins come, my nephews. I brought everybody out to see me play.

"They were kind of upset when I got hurt. When I signed here and I told her, she was like, 'Are you talking about that same team?'

"But then it was like 10 seconds and she said, 'Well, you get to play San Diego twice a year, baby, and when am I going to get my new jersey?' "

The Broncos hope Williams can coax some high-quality play out his 34-year-old body. At his best, the 348-pounder has tormented offensive linemen and battered running backs on the way to three Pro Bowls.

He anchored the middle of a Chargers defense that helped San Diego win the past four division titles and five in the past six years.

"And he used to give (former Broncos center) Tom Nalen hell up front," Broncos cornerback Champ Bailey said. "So I know what he can do."

The Chargers released Williams, who missed virtually all of the 2009 season after tearing a triceps muscle in the season opener against Oakland. With his position coach for 11 of his 12 seasons in San Diego Wayne Nunnely having joined Josh McDaniels' staff last season, the Broncos were No. 1 on Williams' wish list.

Williams said the injury gave him time to heal a battered body. He has had a litany of surgeries, including arthroscopic surgeries on both knees in '07, yet he still played in 13 games that season.

"I'm not a quitter," Williams said. "My mentality is that's not the way I'm going to go out. I'm going to go out fighting. So, I look at it in a positive way. It gave me almost a whole season to heal up everything else. I'm fresh as I can be. I feel like I'm back in college.

"I just look at the guys who played the position before me, those are some tough sons of guns. Look, nobody's body is really meant to play football, and nobody's body is really meant to play nose tackle. That just ain't on the list. You've got to take on 600, 700 pounds worth of guys on every play. But I love it, I love being a real weekend warrior, and now I'm going to do it for the Denver Broncos."

Jeff Legwold: 303-954-2359 or jlegwold@denverpost.com

Healing power

Broncos nose tackle Jamal Williams missed virtually all of the 2009 season with a torn triceps. But he and the Broncos believe time off has given the 34-year-old, three-time Pro Bowl time to rejuvenate. Williams has flourished on the field despite the toll playing his position has taken on him:

Games
Season Missed Injury
2009 15 Triceps
2007 3 Two knee surgeries
2004 1 Knee
2003 1 Knee
2002 4 Dislocated ankle
2001 13 Knee


I hope he still has alot left in the tank sounds like he's ready to go all out

Play2win
05-29-2010, 09:11 AM
Neil Smith 2.0

TheReverend
05-29-2010, 09:34 AM
Neil Smith 2.0

If he ends up being Neil Smith 0.5 I'll be extremely happy.

JJJ
05-29-2010, 09:59 AM
Denver is a great place to retire. :rofl:

The Joker
05-29-2010, 10:09 AM
Denver is a great place to retire. :rofl:

Or to go to if you want a chance to actually win something.

Bigdawg26
05-29-2010, 11:41 AM
Neil Smith 2.0
Hilarious! I was thinking the same thing! But I rather have a Smith clone then what we had up front for the past couple of years!

Kaylore
05-29-2010, 11:47 AM
If he ends up being Neil Smith 0.5 I'll be extremely happy.

This.

Kaylore
05-29-2010, 12:10 PM
Hilarious! I was thinking the same thing! But I rather have a Smith clone then what we had up front for the past couple of years!

Why is that funny? Smith was awesome for us.

Borks147
05-29-2010, 01:18 PM
Denver is a great place to retire. :rofl:

...with super bowl rings.

Rabb
05-29-2010, 07:41 PM
...with super bowl rings.

not fair to say things out of his vocabulary

BroncoBuff
05-29-2010, 08:19 PM
The long, angry-looking scar on his lower left leg is what remains from a low block from former Broncos offensive lineman Steve Herndon that resulted in a dislocated ankle and ended Williams' 2002 season. It's a little bit of his history that brought a smile about the future.

Wasn't it also Herndon - or maybe Dan Neil - who ended a Charger LB's season with a dirty block?

Who was that guy, pretty good LB, former Dolphin, wore a neck pad?

montrose
05-29-2010, 09:49 PM
Who was that guy, pretty good LB, former Dolphin, wore a neck pad?

Bryan Cox?

BroncoBuff
05-29-2010, 10:04 PM
Bryan Cox?
That's him ... guy was a good LB, but a real d!ck if I remember right.

It was either Herndon or Dan Neil who threw a dirty block at Cox and ended his season,though I don't think he was a Charger when it happened.

BigPlayShay
05-29-2010, 10:25 PM
That's him ... guy was a good LB, but a real d!ck if I remember right.

It was either Herndon or Dan Neil who threw a dirty block at Cox and ended his season,though I don't think he was a Charger when it happened.

Dan Neil in 2001. Cox was a Patriot at the time.

400HZ
05-29-2010, 10:47 PM
I doubt that you guys are going to get much from him. His play declined in 2007 and was off sharply in 2008. Another surgery and another year carrying 370 lbs on bad knees isn't going to reverse the trend.

Bigdawg26
05-30-2010, 12:25 AM
Well it can't get any worst than the Sam Adams saga!!

BroncoBuff
05-30-2010, 12:39 AM
I doubt that you guys are going to get much from him. His play declined in 2007 and was off sharply in 2008. Another surgery and another year carrying 370 lbs on bad knees isn't going to reverse the trend.

Whoa there cowboy ... in a heavy rotation, he has two good years left. We still have Ron Fields ... Justin Bannan was very good spelling Ngata at nose every few downs ... Marcus Thomas is apparently aiming at the NT spot, and Chris Baker has a chance to come along.

We'll be fine at nose, in fact across the D-line we will be light years better, as will our second-line secondary, nickel dime and big nickel. If Martindale calls the 3-4 defense well, and Ayers and/or Haggan improve, we could be a near-elite defense. We were ranked #7 last year, and the D-line upgrades are very impressive.

worm
05-30-2010, 12:46 AM
I doubt that you guys are going to get much from him. His play declined in 2007 and was off sharply in 2008. Another surgery and another year carrying 370 lbs on bad knees isn't going to reverse the trend.

I could really care less about the first half of the season. It is in the last quartet and playoff games that Jamal needs to step up and be a difference maker.

Personally, I would love to see the Broncos adopt the slogan and mindset the Saints did last year.

FINISH STRONG.

An awesome new novelty for the Broncos.

400HZ
05-30-2010, 12:59 AM
Whoa there cowboy ... in a heavy rotation, he has two good years left.

That's a fact, huh? I'm going to go ahead and assume that I watched a lot more of Williams' career than you did and can therefore make a more educated assessment.


We still have Ron Fields ... Justin Bannan was very good spelling Ngata at nose every few downs


Ngata doesn't even play nose tackle unless Kelly Gregg is hurt. Bannon was part of their rotation at end.



... Marcus Thomas is apparently aiming at the NT spot, and Chris Baker has a chance to come along.


Wow, how many D linemen is Denver going to have active on gameday? Twelve?

SonOfLe-loLang
05-30-2010, 01:08 AM
That's a fact, huh? I'm going to go ahead and assume that I watched a lot more of Williams' career than you did and can therefore make a more educated assessment.



Ngata doesn't even play nose tackle unless Kelly Gregg is hurt. Bannon was part of their rotation at end.



Wow, how many D linemen is Denver going to have active on gameday? Twelve?

Bannan filled in at NT too...i think when Gregg was hurt

400HZ
05-30-2010, 01:16 AM
Bannan filled in at NT too...i think when Gregg was hurt

When Gregg was hurt Ngata moved inside and Bannan took his place at end. Former Charger Brandon McKinney was active to spell Ngata.

400HZ
05-30-2010, 01:19 AM
Either way, isn't Bannon penciled in as a starter at DE? Who does he have to compete with?

boltaneer
05-30-2010, 01:44 AM
While I agree with 400 that Jamal's play has declined, I think Jamal could bounce back with a nice year with his knees getting a year off from wear and tear.

But the big issue isn't Jamal but more with how Denver's defense will perform this year now that Nolan is gone. He did a marvelous job to get his defense to overachieve last year.

BroncoBuff
05-30-2010, 03:12 AM
When Gregg was hurt Ngata moved inside and Bannan took his place at end. Former Charger Brandon McKinney was active to spell Ngata.

08 not 09

400HZ
05-30-2010, 06:50 AM
08 not 09

In 2008 Bannan started at DE and McKinney and another former Chargers Lamar Divens backed up Ngata at nose tackle.

BMarsh615
05-30-2010, 09:30 AM
I doubt that you guys are going to get much from him. His play declined in 2007 and was off sharply in 2008. Another surgery and another year carrying 370 lbs on bad knees isn't going to reverse the trend.

Not true in 2007 he was rated the 7th best DT in the NFL, the 3rd best 3-4 NT in the NFL, and the 3rd best DT against the run in the NFL according to Pro Football focus. http://profootballfocus.com/by_position.php?tab=by_position&season=2007&pos=DT&stype=r&runpass=&teamid=-1&numsnaps=25&numgames=1

In 2008 he was the 3rd best DT in the NFL, the best 3-4 NT in the NFL, and the best DT in the NFL against the run. http://profootballfocus.com/by_position.php?tab=by_position&season=2008&pos=DT&stype=r&runpass=&teamid=-1&numsnaps=25&numgames=1

Vegas_Bronco
05-30-2010, 10:21 AM
I'm no expert, but this defensive lineup will be one of the most talented Denver has fielded since the late 90's - it may take a few games to get the system in and to gel, but they will have some opponents quitting early. They are no 'orange crush' but they definitely have all the potential to be so.

My real concern in our offensive line! Orton should have a pro bowl/great season...but will depend greatly on his ability to execute McD's offense w/out Marshall. So, I'd say we have much to be concerned about on the other (offensive) side of the ball. Hopefully, we will finally see a season where the offense and defense are consistently performing well AND IN THE SAME GAME...instead of losing the game for the other side.

DenverBrit
05-30-2010, 01:00 PM
I'm no expert, but this defensive lineup will be one of the most talented Denver has fielded since the late 90's - it may take a few games to get the system in and to gel, but they will have some opponents quitting early. They are no 'orange crush' but they definitely have all the potential to be so.

My real concern in our offensive line! Orton should have a pro bowl/great season...but will depend greatly on his ability to execute McD's offense w/out Marshall. So, I'd say we have much to be concerned about on the other (offensive) side of the ball. Hopefully, we will finally see a season where the offense and defense are consistently performing well AND IN THE SAME GAME...instead of losing the game for the other side.

Ditto!!

DenverBrit
05-30-2010, 01:03 PM
While I agree with 400 that Jamal's play has declined, I think Jamal could bounce back with a nice year with his knees getting a year off from wear and tear.

But the big issue isn't Jamal but more with how Denver's defense will perform this year now that Nolan is gone. He did a marvelous job to get his defense to overachieve last year.

Does he get credit for their play during the unbelievable 2-8 meltdown as well??

Hulamau
05-30-2010, 08:56 PM
I doubt that you guys are going to get much from him. His play declined in 2007 and was off sharply in 2008. Another surgery and another year carrying 370 lbs on bad knees isn't going to reverse the trend.

Betcha Jammal is on fire in the two Charger games :-). Laying a few pancakes on Rivers for old time sake.

400HZ
05-30-2010, 10:16 PM
Betcha Jammal is on fire in the two Charger games :-). Laying a few pancakes on Rivers for old time sake.

He'll dominate Hardwick but that's pretty much par for the course. Rivers doesn't need a run game or pass blocking.

DenverBrit
05-30-2010, 10:20 PM
He'll dominate Hardwick but that's pretty much par for the course. Rivers doesn't need a run game or pass blocking.

So now you think he's Tebow. Ha!

boltaneer
05-31-2010, 12:14 AM
Does he get credit for their play during the unbelievable 2-8 meltdown as well??

The main reason I think Denver tanked last year was because of (lack of) talent, not the coaching.

I think Nolan is a bit overrated but he's still a good defensive coordinator and while McDaniels certainly has big questions about him being able to handle being a head coach, he is a great offensive mind. However, he was severely limited by his quarterback and the players around him.

Out-scheming and out-coaching your opponent will only get you so far. Once teams figured Denver out, that's when they started going downhill.

Drek
05-31-2010, 04:31 AM
The main reason I think Denver tanked last year was because of (lack of) talent, not the coaching.

I think Nolan is a bit overrated but he's still a good defensive coordinator and while McDaniels certainly has big questions about him being able to handle being a head coach, he is a great offensive mind. However, he was severely limited by his quarterback and the players around him.

Out-scheming and out-coaching your opponent will only get you so far. Once teams figured Denver out, that's when they started going downhill.

That is also Nolan's calling card though. He doesn't change it up as the season goes on and so its easy for teams to get the book on him and just roll with it.

He's real creative to start the year and makes some good in-game adjustments, but by the middle of a season he's fired all those bullets and teams know what to look for. Then he keeps going back to those "money" plays and strategies from earlier in the season and gets caught with his hand in the cookie jar.

Martindale could potentially be an improvement in that regard. Nolan did his job, he installed and taught the 3-4 very quickly. Now its time for someone else to add the finishing touches Nolan has never gotten quite right.

I would agree on the Broncos lack of talent as well, but not in the entire defensive unit. Just on the front line. We where painfully thin there with starters who should be developing backups and backups who shouldn't be on the roster.

That was a big part of why we signed three 3-4 veterans in FA.

I think the concept McDaniels has for the DL is rather obvious actually. Jamal simply needs to be in on running downs. They'll probably shoot for about 20-25 snaps a game out of him. On those plays he'll be bookended with Bannan and whomever wins the other 3-4 DE job. I'm betting its Ryan McBean. He's young, physically talented, and a year of starting is going to do a lot for him.

When Jamal goes out we use situational subs. On obvious passing downs we get Jarvis Green in at NT where he specializes at getting interior penetration and sacks. On less obvious passing downs we probably get Green in at DE instead and use Fields or Baker at NT, with Bannan as a possibility as well.

Jamal and Jarvis Green are both specialist players. Jamal plays the run, Green plays the pass. Bannan is the every down starter they acquired to lock up the strong side DE position and give continuity. The rotational guys with Green and Williams will obviously be decided in camp.

People shouldn't rule out Chris Baker though. Wouldn't surprise me at all if he comes in ready to kick some ass and wins the #2 NT job behind Williams.

400HZ
05-31-2010, 06:11 AM
So now you think he's Tebow. Ha!

No, thank God.