Brandon Williams working to become Ravens' anchor as new nose tackle
By By Aaron Wilson
The Baltimore Sun|
Aug 18, 2014 at 11:33 AM
Since defensive lineman Brandon Williams' arrival last year as a third-round draft pick, the Ravens regard the strongman from Missouri Southern as one of their most-improved players.
Williams has been installed as the Ravens' new starting nose guard with Pro Bowl defensive lineman Haloti Ngata having taken over Arthur Jones' old defensive tackle spot.
"I feel good, there's obviously a lot of things I can get better at," Williams said. "That's just going to come with time and practice. I definitely feel a lot more comfortable with the playoff, with the speed of the game and everything."
At 6-feet-1, 335 pounds, Williams has a stocky build and outstanding strength -- especially in his upper body.
At the NFL scouting combine last year, he bench pressed 225 pounds 38 times. Williams has a maximum bench press of 525 pounds. He was also featured in a viral YouTube video where he walked on his hands.
"Brandon has progressed quite a bit," defensive line coach Clarence Brooks said. "I mean, he's got a lot of strength, he's got a lot of toughness, he understands the scheme, and he understands what's expected of him.
"Trying to be a starter for us, that's what he wants to do and he's going after that. He's been tremendously serious about how he's working. His offseason was good. He's in great condition, so we feel good about where he's headed.
"He was strong when he walked in, but now his strength is a lot more functional because he understands the technical part of the game a lot better. He understands how we play a lot better and how we want things done. He understands that, and he was able to take his natural strength and work it into what we want. So far, everything is on the upswing."
As a rookie last year, Williams wasn't very productive.
He was limited by a toe injury and finished the season with six tackles, one sack and a fumble recovery in seven games.