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Williams not tipping hand


The question was put point-blank to new defensive coordinator Gregg Williams. What defensive scheme are you going to play?

"We're going to play everything that's ever been played in football before," Williams answered.

If you were looking for something a little more specific, than you'll have to wait at least until training camp for an answer because Williams would seem to be in the process of getting to know the talents of the players on his defense and what exactly those talents are suited to play.

Will it be the attack style for which Williams is known? In his first meeting with the media since being hired by Jack Del Rio to replace Mike Smith, Williams' "body language" suggested that he'd like to believe his defense can play that style of football.

"I know there are a lot of people trying to figure out what we're going to do on defense. We're going to do the Jaguars defense," he said.

"We've looked at the things they've been able to do here for many, many years. We'll try to meld it all together," Williams said, referring to the Jaguars' style of recent years and those scheme ideas Williams brings to the team.

"Football is football. There aren't a lot of different things," he added.

Last season, the Jaguars played a lot of soft, zone coverages meant to deny opponents big plays. The Jaguars played that way, for example, in their playoff loss in New England, when Tom Brady completed 26 of 28 passes.

It's believed that the lack of a pass-rush forced the Jaguars into that style of play, and Del Rio all but confirmed that opinion in this spring's draft, when he traded up in each of the first two rounds to draft a pass-rushing defensive end.

"Mom and dad blessed them in the gene pool," Williams said of the Jaguars' first two draft picks, Derrick Harvey and Quentin Groves. "The ability to flat run, like those two guys can, you're born with that."

Del Rio's reconstruction of the defensive staff, which includes the additions of Williams and defensive backs coach Donnie Henderson, would seem to be geared toward a more aggressive scheme and a tougher mindset. Williams is known for blitzing and Henderson is a press coverage advocate. Del Rio's hope is the combination of the two will give the Jaguars a big-play defense.

"If you want to play on a defense (Del Rio) coaches or I coach, you'll have to be a tough football player," Williams said following Tuesday's practice. "I'm not going to apologize for being competitive. You've got to think you're the best and you have to play with an attitude."

Even in the team's rather tame OTA practices, Williams has introduced a stern regimen of up-down drills, in which players hit the ground and bounce back up. Williams said the drill is a "message of how to get off the ground" and continue to play. Simply put, it's an old-fashioned drill for developing toughness.

It is the scheme in which the Jaguars will display their toughness, however, that remains the focus of fans and media.

"I've had to adapt to who was there," Williams said of previous coordinator stints with the Redskins and Titans, which sandwiched a short period as head coach of the Bills. "I've adapted and the mark of a good staff is to do what the players do best. It's important for me to get a feel for them. We'll start to meld as to what these guys can do best."

Williams referred to the Giants' win over the Patriots in the Super Bowl, in which the Giants unleashed a fierce pass-rush on Brady. Williams said the Giants' scheme, however, was not the star of the game.

"There were four guys whipping tail. There wasn't as (many) pressure (schemes) in that game as people think," Williams said.

"It's a mixture of things. There's no guarantee you can get (rushers) on air. We can at least get them singled up a little bit more and when we do that we expect them to win," Williams said.

That's the game plan: win.

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