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Ricky Williams: The Missing Piece


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Great Article...enjoy~

Williams: The missing piece?

By Dwyne Philippin

MIAMI (June 5, 2002) -- NFL coaches like to say that one player will never put a team over the top and into the Super Bowl. The Miami Dolphins, however, may have added just the player that could change their opinion.

In March, the Dolphins filled one of their biggest needs, acquiring former New Orleans Saint Ricky Williams, the kind of big, bruising running back that would rather run over a defender than dash out of bounds. The price for such power -- which accounted for two 1,000-yard seasons in as many years -- was steep: a first-round selection in April's NFL draft and another conditional pick in the first three rounds of next year's draft.

Miami RBs: 1989-Present
Player Att Yds TDs
Ricky Williams 814 3,129 16
Lamar Smith 622 2,107 20
Karim Abdul-Jabbar 888 3,411 33
Bernie Parmalee 513 1,959 15
Mark Higgs 702 2,648 14
Sammie Smith 509 1,787 15

Yet that's a small price to pay relative to what New Orleans shipped to the Washington Redskins for the right to pick Williams in 1999. The Saints dealt nine selections, including their 1999 and 2000 first-rounders, to make the 1998 Heisman Trophy winner their entire draft class.

With Williams' arrival, the Dolphins can finally implement the power-oriented style of football they've yearned for since the mid-1990s. But while the hope surrounding their most prominent offseason acquisition was obvious at the team's minicamp, immediate results weren't present. Those will come when the regular season gets under way.

"He's learning the offense like everybody else," head coach Dave Wannstedt said. "He'll show more, obviously, when the pads come on because of the style of play that he brings to the table."

Williams' best could make him the finest Miami runner in over a quarter century. Since Miami's entrance into the NFL in 1966, the Dolphins have had only five backs surpass the 1,000-yard plateau during the regular season -- Larry Csonka, Mercury Morris, Delvin Williams, Karim Abdul-Jabbar and Lamar Smith.

Wannstedt on Ricky Williams
"Having the opportunity to get Ricky Williams from the Saints was something we felt as though we could not pass up. We certainly feel like it was worth giving up our first-round draft choice this year. He has been extremely productive in his three seasons in the league, and has proven that he is a tough player. He also catches the ball very well out of the backfield, and his receiving ability is one aspect of his game that I think is overlooked. He has done everything that we’ve asked of him since the trade, and I feel very good about the move so far."

Since the days of Hall of Famer Csonka, the Dolphins have been unable to find a consistent running attack to propel the franchise back to world-championship level. But it's not for a lack of trying. Since the 1980s, Miami has used more than 30 draft picks on a combination of running backs and fullbacks, with four of those picks taken in the first round. And that doesn't include other backs who have been brought in as starters via free agency or trades: Bernie Parmalee, Mark Higgs, Bobby Humphrey, Keith Byars and Smith.

But Miami feels it may finally get the ground game going now that Williams has climbed aboard.

Based on Williams' previous numbers, he should succeed. If he had joined the Dolphins as a rookie and posted the same numbers he had in New Orleans, he would already be the fifth-leading rusher in Dolphins' history.

"I think the biggest plus for me is that I am coming down to a situation where they already have a good team," said Williams, who'll be just another piece in the puzzle rather than the focal point, as he was when he arrived in New Orleans. "I am not going to feel like it's my job to win games. I just have to do my part and we should win."
As for me, I have huge hopes and expectations for Ricky Williams. I think he is the kind of player that will make everyone...Jay Fiedler, the whole OL, the Defense, etc...all will look better with Ricky doing his thing.
Ricky Williams is a special player, and always has been. Ricky is feared by opposing players and coaches. When I see how perfectly he fits our scheme on Offense I am so excited about our upcoming season that I can hardly sit still. The guy is only 24 years old, and is one of the best players in the game, and he plays for the Miami Dolphins!

IMO Ricky was the top acquisition any team made this off-season and that get me really excited, but I know it is not until late Nov that we will be able to see the effects of having a great RB.

Though I suppose Houston getting an entire team was also a nice little acquisition :goof:
"and is one of the best players in the game"

Great pickup but one of the best players in the game no way.
He is one of the top running backs in the league, and is certainly a million times better than Henry.
Originally posted by THATHURMANATOR
"and is one of the best players in the game"

Great pickup but one of the best players in the game no way.

If our O-line stays healthy and gets an attitude....Ricky will be at least one of the top 5 RB`s this year.....Watch and wish, THURM!
Originally posted by THATHURMANATOR
"and is one of the best players in the game"

Great pickup but one of the best players in the game no way.
RW certainly "is one of the best players in the game" based on 1200+ yards rushing and 60 rec's. Maybe top 20 or so. Depends on your definition.
We have a tough schedule next year with a killer December. We have The Bears, Packers, Broncos, Raiders, and Vikings all on our schedule. Should we manage to win against these tough teams then we deserve to be in the playoffs. We didn't fare well against the NFC West last year and this year it looks like we've got the Black and Blue Division.
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