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first_imgNorman’s 15 passes defensed ranks second on the Redskins.Peterson, meanwhile, is one of the least targeted cornerbacks in the NFL.“When you talk bump-and-run technique, he’s the best technician I’ve seen,” Gruden said. “Darrelle Revis was obviously very, very good also, but Patrick, when you’re trying to teach a young guy how to play bump-and-run, he’s the first guy I’ll pull up. Josh is very cerebral, has great natural ball skills, a very good, sound tackler, a very solid corner in the National Football League. They’re a little bit different, but they’re both very, very good.”The new ‘Gumby’Not only does linebacker Chandler Jones lead the league in sacks (14.0) and tackles for loss (24) this season, he’s the only player that ranks in the top-5 in each category.With one sack against the Redskins, Jones would become just the third player in franchise history with 15.0+ sacks in a season and the first with at least one sack in 12 games in a single season.“He’s like Gumby,” Gruden said. “I don’t know how he contorts his body the way he contorts his body. He’s got really strong hands, too. He gets a hold of the offensive tackle’s jersey, and then he can contort his body and get low and his pad level. He’s fun to watch. I try to make pass-rush cut-up tapes every offseason. He’s one of my top guys that I put on there.” TEMPE, Ariz. – Availability is just as important as ability when it comes to playing in the National Football League. Maybe even more so.Case in point: Arizona Cardinals running back Kerwynn Williams.With Adrian Peterson sidelined once again—and missing the rest of the season because of a neck injury—Williams will make his third straight start on Sunday at Washington.Prior to this opportunity, Williams watched as the Cardinals used David Johnson, Chris Johnson and Peterson in the backfield. Derrick Hall satisfied with D-backs’ buying and selling “I’ve never been anyone’s first pick. Ever,” he said. “I’ve never really relied on that, someone else picking me. I always pick myself first. I really try to outwork the doubt, that’s really the biggest thing.”In the last two games, Williams has taken full advantage of his opportunities, rushing for a combined 170 yards on 36 attempts. That’s almost a five-yard per carry average.Oh, and don’t forget Williams is playing with cracked ribs.“This is what we expected. That’s why he’s here,” said head coach Bruce Arians, who has also seen Williams develop into a reliable return specialist. “He couldn’t catch punts two years ago to save his life, but he catches them really good now. That’s just Kerwynn. Whatever it takes for him to make the team, he’s going to do it, but then when he makes it and you put him out there, you’re getting his best.”Williams might not be the biggest—he’s listed at 5-foot-8 and 198 pounds—or the strongest or even the fastest among the Cardinals’ running backs. But no one is going to outwork him. And the on-field results speak for themselves.“We all know he can run the football, but seeing blitzes, picking up protections, catching the ball out of the backfield, just being kind of that total running back that you want to see,” quarterback Blaine Gabbert said. “But, just the way he has been running the football lately, getting through that initial line of defenders, getting in the linebacking corps, making some moves, getting into the secondary and really just keeping our offense ahead of the chains.” Former Cardinals kicker Phil Dawson retires Another early startThis week’s game marks the Cardinals’ sixth in the early time slot this season, and they’ve won only one of those Sundays, Week 2 at Indianapolis.“Football is football. It doesn’t really affect me too much,” wide receiver Larry Fitzgerald said. “I know what I’m going to D.C. to go do. It’s not a sightseeing tour, I’m not going to go play golf at Congressional. I’m going there to take care of business. It’s a business trip for us, and we’ll be ready to go whenever they kick the ball off.” Arizona Cardinals running back Kerwynn Williams (33) jumps over Cardinals offensive guard Earl Watford (71) as Tennessee Titans inside linebacker Wesley Woodyard (59) moves in to attempt a tackle during the second half of an NFL football game, Sunday, Dec.10, 2017, in Glendale, Ariz. The Cardinals defeated the Titans 12-7. (AP Photo/Rick Scuteri) Since arriving in Arizona in 2014, Williams has endured 17 different roster moves, including getting released twice in each of the previous three seasons.There have been no such roster moves here in 2017, yet Williams is not one to feel comfortable in his situation.“I feel like when you get to the point when you feel like, you know, you’ve done all you could do, you’ve proven everything, then that’s when I feel like you rest and you start to relax,” he said. “I never feel that way. I never feel like I’m safe. I always feel like I need to keep working and that’s the mindset I’m always going to have.”The same but differentThey are considered two of the best at their position. But, that’s where the similarities end between Patrick Peterson and Josh Norman who will be on opposite sidelines on Sunday.“They’re both very, very different corners, top of the line corners,” Redskins head coach Jay Gruden said.The difference, Peterson explained, lies in the defensive systems they play in.“We’re a little bit more in your face, man-to-man; follow you, wherever the guy is that’s pretty much my guy. And his system is, it’s a little bit more zone oriented. They play a lot of cover four, mix in cover two here and there,” he said, adding about Norman, “But, what they ask him to do, he do it every well. He’s one of those guys that when the team is preparing he’s on that radar; to look out for 24 on the Washington Redskins defense. An incredible playmaker, has a great knack for the ball.” 1 Comments   Share   Grace expects Greinke trade to have emotional impact Top Stories last_img read more

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