Washington Redskins left tackle Trent Williams and Tampa Bay Buccaneers defensive tackle Gerald McCoy share a special bond.
Former teammates at the University of Oklahoma, the two were selected back-to-back with the third- and fourth-overall picks in the 2010 NFL Draft.
They’re also close friends.
Williams — checking in at 6-foot-5, 327 pounds — said that while the two are no longer walking Oklahoma’s campus together, they still hang out often.
“I’m talking about, like, having Thanksgiving dinner at his house,” Williams said. “We’re really close.”
McCoy, meanwhile, told reporters on Wednesday that after years of sharing a practice field with him and even lining up against him a few times in the pros, he knows why Williams has been selected to back-to-back Pro Bowls.
“I personally believe that Trent is not just one of the best left tackles, but one of the best overall linemen in the NFL on both sides of the ball,” he said. “Even though I think he weighed in at 318 [lbs.], 320 [lbs.] or something like that and ran a 4.81 [40-yard dash], I mean that’s rare athleticism and he is stronger than people think and he is a very smart guy.
“So when you face him, you know you’ve got to bring it all game because he can hurt you in many ways. I’ve watched him since college when we went [to college] together [at Oklahoma]. I mean he played center, guard and tackle, so with a guy with experience like that, he can definitely be scary for an opposing defensive lineman.”
As for that rare athleticism, McCoy found out as a freshman that Williams is a lot faster than originally believed.
“First time I found out Trent was faster than me, we were all freshman and Trent was a bigger guy before he started losing weight and I didn’t know he could run like that,” he said. “So all the linemen got out there – all the smaller guys did a little race, it was quick, like 20 yards – so all the lineman got out there and Trent beat everybody and everybody was like, ‘Come on, man.’ And I kept on like, ‘No, no, y’all are cheating me.’
“And then we got out there and did it again and he won again and I was like, ‘Man, maybe this dude is fast.’ Then we ran our 40s and his time was faster than mine. I said, ‘Yeah, he just can run.’ He is one of those rare athletic big guys from Texas and that’s what his trademark is – his speed.”
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