When the Redskins signed Mike Williams, it was easy to make fun of the move. At the time he weighed 410 pounds, hadn't played in three seasons and was widely considered a bust in his first stint in the league. But after a while, though he remained a longshot to be what some in the organization touted, it was hard not to admire what he was doing. Though he had his issues, Williams worked furiously to drop the weight -- his body looked good this spring -- and displayed some signs that, if nothing else, he could be a solid backup.
On a personal level, he's also a fantastic interview; very engaging, honest and quotable. He had issues with a couple reporters, but resolved both with an easy and approachable manner (well, as approachable as a guy his size could be).
All of which it is unsettling that he might now miss the season, according to the Washington Post, because of blood clots near his heart. He reportedly was hospitalized, and subsequently released, because of the problem, the report said. The worst-case scenario is that it ends his career; regardless, he told 106.7 The Fan that he would miss the season. He told the station that he would return if he obtains "100-percent" clearance from the doctors and also said, "I'm not dead."
Williams signed with the Redskins as a tackle, but because of some rust and a loss of strength, he was highly inconsistent -- his feet were much better than his hands, allowing defenders to control him more than they should. But every time he'd gain some momentum, it seemed he would get hurt. Eventually Williams switched to guard where he appeared to be more effective.
Still, he was guaranteed nothing as Artis Hicks also is vying for the right guard position. My guess it that Hicks would get the job and Williams would be a solid backup. Considering where he was a year ago, that's more than could be expected. To think he could be more than that is a bit much; he'd have to prove he could stay healthy for one thing. But he certainly would have had the opportunity. He's a hard-working player and a team guy. And even if he would have ended up as a backup, his experience at two positions would be beneficial. The alternatives (Chad Rinehart at guard; Stephon Heyer as the No. 3 tackle) are not terrific.