The Arizona Cardinals and their fans collectively gave out a huge groan when nose tackle Dan Williams went down in San Francisco last November in Week 10 with a broken left arm, which put Williams out for the remainder of the season.
The team thankfully had depth at that position, with Nick Eason, David Carter and Ronald Talley picking up the pieces in Williams’ absence, which they did quite well I might add.
Any player that’s lost for any period of time is a player that’s sorely missed, and in Williams’ case, the Cardinals really missed his contributions, despite the rescue squad taking his stead.
In the 49ers game, prior to Williams suffering his injury, he had six tackles, all of them solo.
With his 6-2, 327 pound frame, Williams is well aware of how to get the job done at his position.
In his first two NFL seasons, Williams has 58 tackles, 41 of them being the solo kind.
Williams talked about the disappointment of his injury and the poor timing of it (like any injury comes at a good time).
“I was just more upset that my season was done,” Williams said. “The first words out of my mouth when we got in the back was like ‘Just put a cast on and I can play right?'”
Unfortunately it didn’t go that way for Williams, but as the saying goes “time heals all wounds,” and Williams is ready to get back at it and suit up again for the Cardinals.
“I just used it as motivation, to hurry up and get back out on the field,” Williams said. “It just made me more eager for the season to start.”
Williams knows he will have to earn his position, not expecting head coach Ken Whisenhunt or defensive coordinator Ray Horton to just hand him the starting job.
“I feel each year you need to earn it and feel like you earned it,” Williams said. “I feel like that’s how you respect your position more.”
Everyone knows the success the Cardinals had in the second half of last season, winning seven of their last nine games. Williams believes with a full offseason, the team will be built to make a run to New Orleans and the Super Bowl in February 2013.
“Us having time together, and really getting into the playbooks, and really working together well, we definitely have a great chance of being in New Orleans at the end of the year,” Williams said.