"It went real well and I had fun," said former Bull Trae Williams. "It was like playing a home game for me,"
When the Jags chose Williams with the 159th overall pick they made him the second USF corner taken in 2008, joining Mike Jenkins who was selected in the first round by Dallas. Trae spent five years playing in Tampa, and Saturday was like a homecoming of sorts.
"It felt real comfortable being back on that field, said Trae. "The only difference was I was on a different sideline, and wearing a different uniform. Besides that it felt just like it used to, it felt like being home."
Williams said his time with the Bulls made his NFL transition a bit easier. "Coach Leavitt was pretty hard on us, and made us work hard, Jacksonville is also a hard-working blue collar type team," said Williams. "They got us prepared very well for the next level, and when I got here, I came into a situation already knowing what to do"
Trae was back in Tampa for the Bulls spring game, but as a spectator and hasn't played at the Ray Jay since last season. "It was a pretty good home coming," said Trae. "I got tickets for my mom, sister, and cousins, and there were a lot of other people there. It was real nice being home."
Sometimes being at home is just what the doctor ordered. With just over 9 minutes to play in the game and the Jaguars holding on to a 20-10 lead. Trae picked off Buc's QB Luke McCown's first down pass and returned it to the 10 yard line resulting in a field goal.
"Getting my first NFL interception at Raymond James is pretty far out," said Trae. "My godfather said to me ‘Who would have guessed your first NFL interception would be at your old stadium against the Buc's?"
Making big plays at the Ray Jay is nothing new to Trae. Over the last two years as a Bull, he led all D-I players with 13 interceptions. As a junior was named USF's Defensive Playmaker of the Year after tying the school record (J.R. Reed) with seven interceptions in '06 and last season Trae had six interceptions, with three returned for touchdowns, 10 pass breakups and 50 tackles. Being on his old field Trae showed his game savvy, and phenomenal play making ability, and a knack for finding the ball.
"The pick didn't really feel that different from all the others I've had there," said Williams. "Except that it was my first NFL interception, and that felt nice."
Trae also seems to always be in the right place at the right time and makes big plays when needed. His biggest improvement as a Bull in 2007 was his tackling, and when the Jags game was on the line late, he was tested. With the Jags holding onto a 23-17 lead in the final-seconds. The game ended when the rookie cornerback made a game-saving tackle on the Jaguars' 11-yard line to end the contest.
"That was big," said Williams. "When they got the first down, with the game on the line, making that tackle felt pretty good. It was a pretty big game back in the Ray Jay, and it felt like old times."
Trae is also excited about the Bulls outlook for this season and plans on making a few games.
Check back later for a full interview with the Former Bull.
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