Last week, the Eagles dumped Brian Rolle and signed Adrian Moten, hoping to get a boost on special teams.
Today, they made another swap, releasing Moten and signing Jason Williams.
Williams (6-1, 241) was originally a third-round pick of the Cowboys back in 2009 out of Western Illinois. He played exclusively on special teams as a rookie before getting cut in his second season. Here’s what Tim MacMahon of ESPNDallas.com wrote about Williams at the time of his release:
Williams, a workout wonder, never grasped the Cowboys’ defensive scheme. He has only three defensive tackles in his career (eight more on special teams) and failed miserably in his audition as a nickel linebacker. Williams had two key blown assignments in the loss to the Vikings, giving up a touchdown pass and a long pass that led to another touchdown. He was inactive in the two games since then.
There was internal discussion about releasing Williams after training camp. However, Wade Phillips fought to keep the linebacker he lobbied to pick in the third round.
Williams caught on with the Panthers, starting two games in 2010 and two more in 2011. Last season, he led the team with 15 special-teams tackles and forced a fumble, according to the team’s Web site.
Special teams continues to be an issue for the Eagles. They were terrible in coverage against the Giants. And yesterday, against the Steelers, they gave up a 44-yard kickoff return to Chris Rainey. On the season, the Eagles are giving up an average of 30.3 yards on kickoff returns, fifth-worst in the NFL.
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