Drew replacing 'Dre

After missing the first nine games of his second NFL season with a broken left leg, Andrew Williams gets an opportunity to show what he can do these final weeks in the starting lineup in place of injured Andre Carter at right end. Here, Williams talks about it with SFI.

Q: Even though you started last week's game on very short notice, does this week really feel like your first NFL start because you've had time to prepare for the role?

Williams: Well, no, last week when they put me in, that was my first start. It was a last-minute thing – it was unfortunate what happened to Dre, I wish the best for him – but that's how things come. When you're up, they always say you're one play away. So you always have to go in focused and ready to go.

Q: How much is easier is it to focus this week, since you've been able to prepare as the starter all week?

Williams: I prepared last week as well when Dre was practicing. It's the same way, regardless of if I'm starting or not. I'm preparing the same way, regardless of the situation.

Q: Are you all the way back now from the broken fibula you suffered in August?

Williams: A little bit, yeah, I'm back. It's not bothering my or nothing. I'm good. Game by game, I'm feeling better and better and comfortable with what I'm doing. It's feeling good right now.

Q: Do you feel like these final two games are pretty big for you, as far as your future with the organization?

Williams: I just want to go out there and just have fun and just play hard, you know? I had a little setback (with the broken leg), and I'm just trying to get back to where I was when I came in during the summer. I'm pushing to get back to that point, and then during the offseason I'll work on things and just get better.

Q: How has your development as an edge pass rusher been going?

Williams: I'm coming along real good. It's going game by game. As you know, this is really my first year of playing. I just played two games last year. But this year, just being able to get out there and get a couple snaps here and there when I first came back, and now that I'm able to start, it's just getting comfortable, more comfortable and more comfortable going out there and getting the pass rush on.

Q: How disappointing has it been to have to endure so much adversity and so many struggles as a team throughout this entire season?

Williams: It's been a frustrating year for everybody. I mean, we had a little injury bug, and that really hurt us. We just have to stick together as a team. That's all we really have to do right now, is stick together as a team and count on each other. Hopefully, we can get through this.

Q: Do you feel like you guys can bounce back quickly?

Williams: I mean, we've got a great team here, man. Every guy on this team, is fighting and playing hard. We have to stick together as a team, and go out there every day and just practice hard and then when it's game time, play hard.

Q: Now that you've got a taste of some real action now, what do you have to do in the offseason to improve?

Williams: I guess, at the end of the season, we'll get together as a team, and the coaches will let us know what we need to do and work on during the offseason. So, right now, I'm just worrying about just concentrating on this week, and this game, and then when that comes at the end of the season, they'll let us know. And (defensive line coach) Dan Quinn, he's a great coach, and he'll let me know what I need to work on and what will help me get better.

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