Vikings defensive tackle Kevin Williams took the stand Tuesday in the Williams Wall case against the NFL. He expected to continue testimony Wednesday, with Pat Williams also scheduled to take the stand.
testified in the StarCaps trial in Hennepin County District Court Tuesday and said that he has never taken steroids and wouldn't have taken StarCaps had he know it contained bumetanide.
During his 30 minutes on the witness stand, Williams said he was unaware that the banned substance bumetanide, used in some instances by steroid users to mask their use, was in the dietary supplement StarCaps. In his testimony, Williams said he believed StarCaps contained a natural ingredient like papaya or garlic. He said he used StarCaps as a way of cutting weight before the start of training camp and had a $400,000 bonus built into his contract if he maintained a team-prescribed weight during 10 annual weigh-ins.
Williams said his family learned of his positive test when the story broke nationally in September – with the news let out of the positive tests by Jay Glazer of FOX Sports and a Denver television station. None of the reporters have been put on witness lists to confirm or deny who leaked the information and, considering that the trial has already begun, it seems unlikely that anyone in the media connected with the story becoming public will be compelled to testify – or not testify and face contempt of court charges. But how the information got to the media is important, as the details of positive NFL drug tests are supposed to be confidential.
The case will resume today with Kevin still on the witness stand, this time facing questions from the NFL's lawyers. If time permits today, Pat Williams
is also scheduled to testify.
Don't expect to see a deal with LaDainian Tomlinson to get done Thursday when he is scheduled to visit the Vikings. It is clear that the Vikings want L.T. as a second option in the backfield behind Adrian Peterson, while Tomlinson might believes he can be an NFL starter or at the least on the business end of a time-share at running back. Tomlinson could meet, whether formally or behind the scenes, with other teams before making a decision on where to play in 2010.
Cornerback Marlin Jackson, formerly of the Colts, has been rumored to be on the Vikings' radar. However, they are not alone. Jackson made a visit to Baltimore Tuesday to meet with the Ravens, who, after acquiring Anquan Boldin in a trade with the Cardinals, have likely vaulted cornerback to the top of their needs list during free agency and heading into the draft. After his visit with the Ravens, Jackson heads to Philadelphia to meet with the Eagles brass. It is unclear if any visit with the Vikings is currently being planned.
Keep an eye on Seattle if they don't end up trading one of their two first-round picks to the Broncos for Brandon Marshall, which many believe would be a good decision by the Seahawks. On Monday, the Seahawks traded backup QB Seneca Wallace to the Browns for an undisclosed draft pick in the 2011 draft. If the Seahawks hold on to both of their of their first-round picks, they might be looking at a bold move if Sam Bradford is on the board after the Rams make their pick at No. 1. They could pull a Jets-getting-Mark Sanchez type of move because the sixth and 14th picks that Seattle currently own would have a lot of currency value in a draft considered one of the deepest in quite a few years.
What a difference a year can make. Last year, one of the hot offsseason topics was the possibility of the Vikings swinging a deal with Cleveland to acquire either Brady Quinn or Derek Anderson. A year later, Anderson was given his walking papers. The Browns cut him Tuesday to avoid paying a $2 million bonus he was due on March 19.
The ripple effect of the Chester Taylor signing in Chicago claimed its first casualty Tuesday. The Bears released veteran Thomas Jones, who served as Matt Forte's backup with the Bears after a distinguished, yet injury-riddled career in Detroit.
John Holler has been writing about the Vikings for more than a decade for Viking Update. Follow Viking Update on Twitter and discuss this topic on our message boards. To become a subscriber to the Viking Update web site or magazine, click here.