Dec 1, 2013; Philadelphia, PA, USA; Philadelphia Eagles cornerback Cary Williams (26) runs back an interception during the third quarter against the Arizona Cardinals at Lincoln Financial Field. The Eagles defeated the Cardinals 24-21. Mandatory Credit: Howard Smith-USA TODAY Sports

Eagles Cary Williams Must Bring 'Nasty' Back to 'D'

Philadelphia Eagles cornerback Cary Williams wants to get to the Pro Bowl.

I’d rather him say the only goal is to get to a different bowl, one that people actually 1) watch, 2) care about and 3) delivers a big, shiny trophy to the winner, but we can’t have everything in life, right?

I’m partially kidding, because we really don’t know what kinds of questions Williams was asked that led to this Inquirer story by Zach Berman. Perhaps the topic of team goals never came up. Maybe Williams talked about wanting to win a Super Bowl and Berman didn’t include those comments in the story. Who knows?

It’s somewhat irrelevant, because the two things are most likely linked. If Cary Williams goes to the Pro Bowl, the Philadelphia Eagles most likely are going to the Super Bowl.

Williams is a fairly reliable cornerback. That might not sound like a ringing endorsement, but it’s saying something. There are a lot of players in the NFL you’d like to see in an Eagles uniform a lot less than Williams.

He’s not going to lead the league in interceptions. He’s not going to make the kinds of plays that end up on SportCenter’s Top 10. But he makes the kinds of plays that win football games.

It stands to reason that if Williams makes more of those plays this season, the Eagles win more games, he gets more press, and everyone ends up with what they want.

Perhaps the biggest thing Williams can and should do is bring the “nasty” back to the Philadelphia Eagles’ defense. Back when the legendary Brian Dawkins patrolled the Birds’ secondary, opposing wide receivers had to keep an eye on No. 20 for fear their head would be removed from their body.

The Eagles have lost that edge. I shudder to think of the results of a player poll surveying which secondary was least feared last season. That’s a list you don’t want to be at the top of, and the Eagles were likely close.

Williams’ background is with the Baltimore Ravens and a defense no one took for granted. There was legitimate fear there, and in a game like football that kind of fear can be the difference in route running, or pass catching. A small decrease in concentration on the ball because you’re afraid of getting drilled out there can be the difference between winning and losing.

The Eagles are fighting a bit with each other thus far in training camp, something Williams says he’s a fan of in the Berman piece. It’s something, too, he said he expects to join in on in the near future.

Hey, if it helps bring back an Eagle defense that strikes fear into opponents, I’m all for it. Because that really should be Williams’ first goal.

The rest will take care of itself.

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