Jason Williams (American football)
No. 54 Carolina Panthers
|Date of birth:April 23, 1986|
|Place of birth: Chicago, Illinois|
|High school: Chicago (IL) DuSable|
|College: Western Illinois|
|NFL Draft: 2009 / Round: 3 / Pick: 69|
|Debuted in 2009 for the Dallas Cowboys|
Career highlights and awards
Career NFL statistics as of 2012
|Stats at pro-football-reference.com|
Jason X. Williams (born April 23, 1986) is an American football linebacker who plays for the Carolina Panthers. He was drafted by the Cowboys in the third round of the 2009 NFL Draft. He played college football at Western Illinois.
High school career
Williams was born in Chicago, Illinois and attended DuSable High School, where he helped lead his team to an undefeated record in the Chicago Public League’s Intra-City Central Conference. He rushed for 2,988 yards, threw for 3,015 and recorded 71 total touchdowns (35 rushing and 36 passing) in his career and was a two-time All-City and All-Section selection.
Williams then attended Western Illinois University where he majored in Exercise science and was a member of Delta Upsilon Fraternity. As a true freshman in 2004 he redshirt. In 2005, he played in 10 of 11 games and recorded 23 tackles (14 solo). He also started the final two games of the season at strong safety. As a sophomore in 2006, he started all 11 games at linebacker, the only one to do so that season. He recorded 92 tackles, three sacks, three forced fumbles, one interception. He also earned All-Gateway Conference honorable mention and earned the team’s Green Beret award for his significant contributions to the kicking game.
As a junior in 2007, Williams recorded 107 tackles, eight sacks and five forced fumbles, all of which led the Gateway Conference. The five forced fumbles tied a school record, while ranking fifth in the nation. He was also named to the AFCA All-America Team, the Associated Press All-America Second-team and The Sports Network All-America Second-team, as well as being a First-team All-Gateway selection, while ranking among the nation’s top 50 defensive players in tackles for loss, total tackles and sacks. He was also a runner-up for the Gateway Defensive Player of the Year Award. He was also named the team’s defensive MVP at the teams annual awards banquet.
As a senior in 2008, Williams was named to Lindy's pre-season All-America First-team and the Consensus Draft Services All-America Second-team. He was also one of three linebacks named to The Sporting News' pre-season FCS All-America team. He was also named to Phil Steele's pre-season All-America First-team. For the season, Williams recorded 67 tackles (39 solo), 14.5 tackles-for-losses and led the nation with a school-record six forced fumbles. He finished fourth in the Buck Buchanan award voting. He was also named to the Associated Press All-America First-team, the Sports Network All-America First-team and the College Sporting News All-Ameerica team. He also became the first player in school history to earn repeated AFCA All-America honors, he was also named the team's Defensive MVP and played in the East-West Shrine Game.
Williams ended his career by setting a FCS record and tied the NCAA all-division record of 14 career forced fumbles. While at Western Illinois, he recorded a career total of 289 tackles, 15.0 sacks, 45 tackles-for-loss, 14 forced fumbles, two fumble recoveries, 12 pass breakups, one interception and a blocked kick while starting 35-of-43 games.
|Ht.||Wt.||40-yard dash||10-yd split||20-yd split||20 ss||3-cone||Vert||Broad||BP|
|6'1"*||241 lb.*||4.49*||1.49*||2.59*||x*||x*||39"*||10' 9"*||26*|
(* represents Northwestern Pro Day)
The Dallas Cowboys started the 2009 NFL Draft without a first round draft choice (part of the price to acquire Roy Williams) and then traded out of the second round, after they couldn't draft center Max Unger. After posting great pre-draft numbers, the Cowboys surprised observers by selecting Williams in the third round (69th overall). He was inactive for 11 games (3 with a sprained left ankle) and played in only five, recording two special teams tackles.
In 2010 during a 1-7 start, the Cowboys declared him inactive for two games because of poor play, before releasing him on November 2, based on his inability to grasp the defense and a lack of consistency on special teams.
Carolina Panthers (first stint)
Williams was claimed off waivers on November 3 by the Carolina Panthers and recorded 5 tackles, a fumble recovery and two passes defensed in two games as a starter at weak-side linebacker, before being placed on the injured reserve on December 13 with a torn ACL.
Carolina Panthers (second stint)
Williams was claimed off waiver on November 5, 2012, he played in 5 games (3 games inactive), recorded 15 special teams tackles. He was released before the start of the 2013 season. On October 16, 2013 the Panthers resigned him to take over Chase Blackburn's special teams duties, after he was named the starter at weakside linebacker. He blocked a punt against the New York Jets.