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Rick Stroud, Greg Auman and Matt Baker

Bucs' Mike Williams gets personal challenge from Raheem Morris



When coach Raheem Morris singled out receiver Mike Williams for losing individual battles against the Patriots last week, he didn’t just do it in the media.

Williams said Morris personally challenged him to win his one-on-one matchups after he was bottled up by Patriots cornerback Devin McCourty.

Morris “called the receivers out as a group because he called us the leader of the bus,” Williams said. “But he really called me out for real. He told me, ‘(With) man coverage, we’re going to the X.’ That’s where you have to go.”

The ‘X’ is a reference to the split end, the term used for Williams’ position in the Bucs’ offensive scheme.

The press coverage utilized by the Patriots got the better of Tampa Bay’s receivers. If teams continue to be successful with it, the Bucs will see it even more.

“On some plays, I don’t know, I guess you could say I got gloved up,” Williams said. “(On) some plays, it was just a lot of pressure. But he basically called me out and said I have to win quickly and do like I did last year.”

Last year, Williams proved difficult to stop, excelling against all types of defensive tactics, including press coverage. He finished with a team-high 964 yards and 11 touchdowns, also a team high.

The goal is to show progress on Saturday against the Dolphins, when the Bucs’ starting offense will play at least the whole first half.

“We definitely have to play better as a team,” Williams said. “There’s going to be a test with us playing the whole first half. I think last week was a good test for us to let us know we’re not unstoppable like we think we are. We’re going to come back next week and see what we’ve got.”

[Last modified: Tuesday, August 23, 2011 12:29pm]


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