BEREA, Ohio– If you’re a Browns fan, you have to love what new defensive coordinator Gregg Williams said in his 50-minute introductory news conference on Thursday afternoon in Berea.
Now, the question becomes can he translate his words into actions on the football field? Williams has proven in the past that he can turn around defenses.
“I’m fortunate to be the only defensive coordinator in the history of the National Football League to go to five or more places, with five or more coaching staffs, with five or more groups of players, with five or more styles completely, schematically different kinds of defense, but be top five defense down to number one,” Williams said.
Williams had a top 10 defense seven times in his career and has won a Super Bowl with the New Orleans Saints.
“Semi smart,” Williams said. “Why would I ask you to play what he plays and why would I ask you to play what he plays?”
Williams was suspended by the league in 2012 for his involvement in the New Orleans Saints bounty scandal where players were paid for causing injuries to opponents. Williams did not want to answer any questions about bounty-gate in his introductory news conference.
“We are not here to talk about that,” Williams said. “Is there a quote out there of me ever talking about it? So you want to be the first guy to have the quote?”
The Browns ran a 3-4 defense last year under Ray Horton who was fired after just one season. The Browns had the 31st-ranked defense in the league. Williams said he will run a Cleveland-based defense, he has 42 packages of defenses from 4-3 to 3-4 to 5-2 to “Bear.”
“I’m not going to box them into a certain kind of defense. I’m not going to box them into a certain way they have to play,” Williams said. “What I am going to box them into is their effort and toughness.”
We’ll see if that is enough to turn around the 31st ranked defense from 2016.