August 16, 2012

K. Williams adds value, new positions in defense

After playing mostly on special teams and sparingly on defense as a true freshman Karlos Williams spent plenty of time in the playback this off-season to ensure he would see the field more in 2012.

Last season as a true freshman Williams made just eight tackles in 12 games.

This season the Davenport native still won't have a starting role as Terrence Brooks seems to have a solid grip on the starting job a free safety. Williams said despite not running with the starters he knows he will see the field plenty.

"Right now I am running with the twos, but me and Brooks are very interchangeable," he said. "I'm a bigger safety, I might play more run situations. More third-and-short, more fourth downs when guys are going for it. You just have to be in a situation to play. Right now I am in a situation to play, I feel comfortable if (Defensive coordinator Mark) Stoops needs me to go in on any down I can go in and play it."

In an effort to ensure that he is ready for any and every situation, Williams didn't study just his responsibilities as safety when he combed thorough the playbook this summer.

"I'm trying to learn more about the playbook and adjustments," he said. "Also I'm trying to learn more Sam (outside linebacker) and nickel and more if possible. The more positions I know the more I can get on the field, coming from Coach Stoops. It's a lot to take in, but it's also a lot to be happy about."

At 6-foot-1, 230 pounds a move to outside linebacker would seem like a logical one for Williams. The sophomore, whose brother Vince Williams is the Seminoles' starting middle linebacker, said he would do whatever is best for the team in the future.

"It's really going to be up to Coach Stoops and the rest of the coaching staff to figure out what's best for the team," he said. "I've always done everything I can to help the team win. It's not a Karlos sport, its' a team sport, and I'm just looking forward to playing this season. Of course if I do move down to linebacker it's going to be what's best for the team, not just the best move for me."

Despite his size Karlos Williams feels he can play safety, citing former University of Miami and Washington Redskins' safety Sean Taylor, who played also played for Stoops, as an example.

There are no immediate plans for the younger Williams to join his brother in the linebacking corps. For now Stoops is just pleased with the effort the former five-star recruit is showing to get on the field.

"Karlos, he's improved. I'm encouraged, I'm happy," Stoops said. "He's earning the right to play, and I think his instincts and his learning have improved drastically. So hopefully we'll get him coached up."

During Tuesday's practice Karlos Willaims was not only working as the second-team safety, but as the starting kick returner alongside Lamarcus Joyner, a role he relishes. Last season Karlos Willaims averaged 23.2 yards per kick return, and despite new kickoff rules he feels he can still have a big impact as a return man.

"The game can change with special teams, I learned that from Coach (Eddie) Gran," Karlos Williams said. "Everybody on our kickoff team is coming back, we had a lot of big returns last season with the system we ran and I believe in the system and so do our other guys that are blocking and the off-returners. I believe we're going to have the number one special teams again with the hard work that we put in." managing editor D.C. Reeves contributed to this report

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