Rejuvenated Williams fills hole at Vikings' nose tackle

  • Article by: CHIP SCOGGINS , Star Tribune
  • Updated: November 9, 2013 - 12:31 AM

But, at 33, Kevin Williams prefers former position.

 

Kevin Williams figured he’d sleep all day Friday after playing a season-high 63 snaps at nose tackle in a 34-27 victory the night before against the Washington Redskins.

In reality, those bumps and bruises collected from banging bodies at the defense’s anchor position made it impossible to relax.

“It wasn’t the best night of sleep,” Williams said Friday. “Just a little sore.”

He wasn’t complaining after playing a starring role with a throwback performance at a new position. Forced to play nose tackle because of injuries to Letroy Guion and Fred Evans, Williams dominated like a 26-year-old version of himself to help tighten the screws on Washington quarterback Robert Griffin III.

Williams collected 2½ sacks in the second half to post his first multi-sack game since 2009. Not bad for a guy who isn’t crazy about playing nose tackle.

“I just embraced it,” he said.

And if he’s still listed at nose tackle when he returns to work on Monday?

“Are you sure? That will be my reaction,” Williams said, laughing. “If those guys can’t go, I look at it as next man up and I’ll have to do it again.”

At age 33 and in his 11th season, Williams has built a résumé worthy of Hall of Fame consideration at the other tackle position known as the 3-technique. He’s been named first-team All Pro five times and earned six Pro Bowl nominations.

Williams now ranks 11th in NFL history in sacks by a defensive tackle with 59. He needs only two sacks to move into a tie for 10th place with Michael Dean Perry. Williams already is tied with Dan Wilkinson for most interceptions by a defensive tackle in league history with five.

Given the way he dominated at nose tackle Thursday night, it’s reasonable to consider whether Williams should switch positions permanently.

“My first thought I would say, ‘No,’ ” he said. “But I’m the ultimate team guy. If it will help us win games and give us a better chance to win, I’m for it.”

Vikings coach Leslie Frazier said the coaching staff will discuss whether to keep Williams at that position.

“I’ll tell you, the way he played in that ballgame, it’s something we’ve got to consider,” Frazier said. “We count on Letroy and Fred to do a good job for us there, but Kevin did some really good things.”

Thin at nose tackle

Injuries to Guion and Evans have left the Vikings with only three healthy tackles: Williams, rookie Sharrif Floyd and little-used backup Chase Baker.

So on Monday, defensive line coach Brendan Daly told Williams that the coaches needed him to slide over one spot. Williams joked that Floyd should play nose tackle since he’s younger.

  • get related content delivered to your inbox

  • manage my email subscriptions

ADVERTISEMENT

Atlanta - WP: A. Harang 11 FINAL
Pittsburgh - LP: F. Liriano 3
Houston - WP: J. Fields 7 FINAL
NY Yankees - LP: D. Robertson 4
Seattle - WP: H. Iwakuma 5 FINAL
Philadelphia - LP: A. Burnett 2
Arizona - LP: C. Anderson 1 FINAL
Washington - WP: S. Strasburg 8
LA Angels - WP: J. Smith 4 FINAL
Boston - LP: K. Uehara 3
Detroit - WP: J. Johnson 8 FINAL
Tampa Bay - LP: G. Balfour 6
Texas - LP: N. Cotts 3 FINAL
Miami - WP: S. Dyson 4
San Francisco - LP: R. Vogelsong 0 FINAL
Chicago Cubs - WP: T. Wada 2
Baltimore - WP: C. Tillman 5 FINAL
Chicago WSox - LP: J. Quintana 1
Cleveland - WP: K. Crockett 7 FINAL
Minnesota - LP: B. Duensing 5
Toronto - LP: J. Happ 1 FINAL
Milwaukee - WP: M. Fiers 6
Cincinnati - LP: J. Hoover 4 FINAL
St. Louis - WP: P. Neshek 5
Kansas City - WP: J. Shields 7 FINAL
Colorado - LP: T. Matzek 4
NY Mets - LP: D. Gee 2 FINAL
Oakland - WP: S. Kazmir 6
San Diego - LP: I. Kennedy 6 FINAL
Los Angeles - WP: K. Correia 8
Pittsburgh 8/21/14 6:30 PM
Philadelphia
Carolina 8/22/14 6:30 PM
New England
NY Giants 8/22/14 6:30 PM
NY Jets
Jacksonville 8/22/14 6:30 PM
Detroit
Oakland 8/22/14 7:00 PM
Green Bay
Chicago 8/22/14 9:00 PM
Seattle
Tampa Bay 8/23/14 3:30 PM
Buffalo
Tennessee 8/23/14 6:00 PM
Atlanta
Dallas 8/23/14 6:00 PM
Miami
Washington 8/23/14 6:30 PM
Baltimore
New Orleans 8/23/14 7:00 PM
Indianapolis
Minnesota 8/23/14 7:00 PM
Kansas City
St. Louis 8/23/14 7:00 PM
Cleveland
Houston 8/23/14 8:00 PM
Denver
San Diego 8/24/14 3:00 PM
San Francisco
Cincinnati 8/24/14 7:00 PM
Arizona
Montreal 8/22/14 7:30 PM
Winnipeg
Toronto 8/23/14 3:00 PM
Edmonton
Calgary 8/24/14 2:00 PM
Ottawa
Saskatchewan 8/24/14 6:00 PM
Brt Columbia
Connect with twitterConnect with facebookConnect with Google+Connect with PinterestConnect with PinterestConnect with RssfeedConnect with email newsletters

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

Date/Opponent Time W L Score
2014 preseason     
Aug 8 - vs. Oakland 7 pmX10-6
Aug 16 - vs. Arizona 7:30 pmX30-28
Aug 23 - at Kansas City 7 pm
Aug 28 - at Tennessee 7 pm
2014 regular season     
Sep 7 - at St. Louis Noon
Sep 14 - vs. New England Noon
Sep 21 - at New Orleans Noon
Sep 28 - vs. Atlanta 3:25 pm
Oct 2 - at Green Bay 7:25 pm
Oct 12 - vs. Detroit Noon
Oct 19 - at. Buffalo Noon
Oct 26 - at Tampa Bay Noon
Nov 2 - vs. Washington Noon
Nov 9 - Bye
Nov 16 - at Chicago Noon
Nov. 23 - vs. Green Bay Noon
Nov. 30 - vs. Carolina Noon
Dec 7 - vs. NY Jets Noon
Dec 14 - at Detroit Noon
Dec 21 - at Miami Noon
Dec 28 - vs. Chicago Noon

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

question of the day

Poll: Who would you rather have on your team?

Weekly Question

ADVERTISEMENT

 
Close