<span>Gregg Williams, the New Orleans Saints defensive coordinator, talked before the 2009 NFL Draft this afternoon and shared a little insight into the philosophy he will employ this year overseeing the Saints' defense.
"We are going to have multiple, and I mean multiple, defensive looks and packages," Williams said. "I can tell you today that people won't say the Saints will be a base 4-3 or 3-4 defense. We will look different every single week and maybe even every different defensive series. We may be running six defensive backs out there, maybe four linebackers, who knows? I just want to create mismatches and create havoc."
Williams has led a low-key existence since taking over the reigns of the defense, at least in the public eye, but behind the scenes Williams has been bounding across the country looking at potential draft picks and also regularly working with the current and freshly signed defensive players. "I can tell you I am really anxious to hit the grass and really start coaching these guys," Williams said of the upcoming rookie mini-camp in two weeks.
Speaking of the rookies, the highly respected coach said that the rookies coming into the NFL, regardless of where they are drafted, would be in for an often-rocky transition to the professional ranks. "Make no mistakes about it, the transition from college football to the pros, regardless of how high or low you are drafted, is a tough one. Some guys can make it easier than others, but this is a pretty serious jump in class. That's where the coaching comes into play," Williams said.
The former head coach of the Buffalo Bills refused to tip his hand today as far as what direction the Saints will be heading with the 14th pick overall in the draft. "We aren't interested in fitting square pegs in round holes here," Williams said. "But I do know this, we have a strong conviction and we know the kind of players we are looking for. I want guys, regardless of position, that can run fast, hit hard and understand what everyone on the field is doing on every snap."
Before heading into the draft room, Williams shook his head when asked how he was enjoying the Saints so far. "I will tell you the thing that I am most amazed at," he said. "I believe we are at 100% in the players participation in strength and conditioning. That to me says 100% commitment from the roster. I have never heard or seen that anywhere before. Honestly. That, to me, is a testament to Sean Payton and Mickey Loomis. It tells you how much this team stresses character and it shows up every single day here."