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Cary Williams will make his regular-season debut with the Eagles on Monday night. (AP)
Q. Do you see [Cary] Williams becoming a big issue on and off the field in the coming weeks?
A. Off the field, absolutely not. Williams seems like an intelligent, responsible, family man who isn’t club-hopping every other night and out looking for trouble. This might sound hard to believe, but he’s also a fairly low-key guy in the locker room. I don’t think he’ll be a problem with teammates because he’s well-respected. Williams is obviously hot-headed, but most of the players on defense really like the edge he brings and his competitive thirst. Those were attributes the secondary sorely missed. I do think Williams has a temper problem that he needs to control, especially when he crosses the white lines. I think he’s one of those guys who has an inside switch that flicks whenever he puts on the jersey. I don’t know if it’s an anger management problem, but he certainly seems to have trouble maintaining composure in the heat of battle. He’s quickly gaining a league-wide reputation for extra curricular activity after the whistle and I’m sure he’s a marked man among the referees, especially after shoving one in the Super Bowl and getting away with it. If there’s going to be a problem with Williams, it’ll be keeping him in games. If he get tossed out, he’s hurting the team. And if it happens more than once, then it might become an on-field issue that needs to be further addressed.
Q. Could the Eagles target Josh Freeman next year if he becomes available?
A. If Freeman were to become available, it would probably be because he had another subpar season and Tampa Bay decided against re-signing him. Already, he’s off to a bad start as the team didn’t vote him a captain after Freeman had been a captain the past three years. I suppose the Eagles could bring him into compete for a backup job next offseason, but even if they’re not committed to Vick beyond 2012, Chip Kelly is more likely to find his next starter in the NFL draft than on the unemployment line. Freeman’s athleticism would probably endear him to Kelly, and though he’s had some rough patches, Freeman’s overall stats aren’t horrible. He took a step back last year, completing just 55 percent of his passes even after the team splurged on Pro Bowl wideout Vincent Jackson in free agency. He’s been a high-interception guy for much of his career and has a 24-32 record as a starter, so the market for him likely wouldn’t be ripe. It’s possible that Freeman’s strengths could be capitalized in Kelly’s offense, but he’d have to compete for the job. He wouldn’t be signed to be the starter.
Q. What are you [thinking] picking the Cowboys in the Super Bowl?
- Andrew Brennan
A. It’s true, I predicted Dallas to make the Super Bowl in my season preview (see story). There are better quarterbacks than Tony Romo. There are better receivers than Dez Bryant (though not many). There are better running backs than DeMarco Murray. But the way I see it, no other NFC team has a better quarterback-wideout-running back trio than Dallas has. The Cowboys have upgraded their offensive line, which had been their weakness for a few years, and still have a future Hall of Fame tight end in Jason Witten. This should be one the NFL’s most explosive offenses. The defense has plenty of talent with DeMarcus Ware, Sean Lee, Jay Ratliff and two outstanding corners in Morris Claiborne and Brandon Carr. With Monte Kiffin in charge, Dallas’ defense should be disciplined and stout. If the Cowboys are ever going to be a Super Bowl team in the Romo era, this is the year. But take solace in this: I picked them to lose the big game to Houston.