At 6-foot-3, 317 pounds, Pat Williams fills a photo frame. Watch Williams wearing full pads on the practice field and the credibility of the 317-pound reference next to Williams' name in the Vikings' media guide is in question.
The Vikings think they finally found a defensive tackle to plug the hole next to Pro Bowler Kevin Williams. Chris Hovan carried that responsibility in recent years, but a decline in production led to his release and the free agent signing of Pat Williams in February.
Williams was the first players to sign with the Vikings during the 2005 free agency period. What followed was an onslaught of free agent signings that could thrust the Vikings defense from being one of the league's bottom feeders to one of the elite.
"After they signed me it was like, ‘They signed Smoot this week, they signed Sharper, they signed Cowart,'" Pat Williams said. "I was telling my homeboys they were signing everybody so I was excited."
The Vikings' front four should more formidable than it's been in years. Both Williamses will anchor the interior while 2004 No. 1 pick Kenechi Udeze is at left end and Darrion Scott at right end. First-round pick Erasmus James (18th overall, Wisconsin) is listed on the team depth chart behind Scott but could emerge as the starter sometime this season.
"This is brand new, it's like I'm starting all over," said Pat Williams, who has played on some impressive front fours. "It'll be one of the best I've played on and I've played with Bruce Smith and Bryce (Paup) in Buffalo and that was one of the best front fours ever. I've played with some great veterans, but these are guys who are going to be great."
Pat Williams has only played alongside Kevin Williams for a handful of training camp practices, but already he is impressed.
"He's a freak. He does things that ain't natural," Pat Williams said. "Everything is natural to him. He's naturally strong, he's naturally smart."
Kevin Williams, the Vikings' top pick in 2003, is excited to play next to Pat.
"It's going to help a lot. They're going to have to pick their poison," Kevin Williams said. "You can't constantly want to double me with a guy like Pat beside me. He'll make all the plays in the run unless you try to run around him. He's going to be a tremendous help."
Whole New Feeling For The Williamses
Viking Update Top Stories
Podcast: Moss returned, Zimmer refreshedViking Update publisher Tim Yotter and Star Tribune columnist Jim Souhan talk about Randy Moss, Mike Zimmer, Sam Bradford vs. Teddy Bridgewater, and MVP odds.
Viking Update8:38 AM
Jones knows his role, unlike in Green BayDatone Jones never found his calling in Green Bay, making position switch after position switch. Now with the Minnesota Vikings, the former first-round pick is excited to get a…
Viking Update7:16 AM
Murray: I’m getting the ballLatavius Murray has fallen behind Minnesota Vikings rookie Dalvin Cook while the veteran recovers from surgery, but Murray is not backing away from taking a job he believes is his.
Viking Update4:03 AM
Vikings join growing trend with campThe Minnesota Vikings join a growing trend of having NFL rookies report to training camp before veterans.
Viking UpdateYesterday at 1:35 PM