Cary Williams knew his answer might raise a few eyebrows, but when the new Eagles cornerback was asked Friday who he modeled his game after, he delivered an honest reponse.
“You might not like this, but I model myself after Nnamdi [Asomugha],” Williams said. “He didn’t have much success here, but I don’t plan on going down that path. I always see myself as him because he’s a taller, leaner guy, and a guy that I actually liked with a skill set.
“When he was in Oakland, everybody in here knows he was a force out there. As a guy growing up watching the guy, that’s the guy who I watched was Nnamdi. Unfortunately he wasn’t able to duplicate that success here, but I plan on doing otherwise.”
Asomugha, of course, was released on Tuesday after two highly disappointing seasons with the Eagles. But Williams was obviously talking about the Asomugha who played in Oakland, the guy who made the Pro Bowl three times and was considered an elite cornerback.
As for size, the two are similar. Asomugha is listed at 6-2, 210, and Williams is 6-1, 190.
One area where the two are definitely different is on-field demeanor. Asomugha is low-key and sometimes shies away from contact. Williams, meanwhile, has never been afraid to mix it up.
“Intimidation is huge in this game,” Williams said. “I think it’s one thing to intimidate, but also to go out there and play physical each and every week, week-in and week-out, guys look at film, and they notice those things and take those things to heart.”
Considering his aggressive style, it’s surprising that Williams was only called for six penalties last year, according to Pro Football Focus; 18 cornerbacks were flagged more (including both Asomugha and Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie). In 2011, Williams was only called for five penalties (tied for 22nd).