Mike Williams has proved incredibly adept at garnering NFL Rookie of the Week nominations. Could his first win in the balloting be far behind? And, in a larger sense, is there a more obvious Rookie of the Year candidate?
For the fourth time in just six NFL games, Williams has been nominated for the NFL's rookie award; not coincidentally, his four bids have matched up exactly with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers' four wins. Williams has played a critical role in each of the Bucs' victories and those efforts have been recognized by the NFL and its fans.
A fourth-round pick out of Syracuse in April, Williams is the only player in the league who has already been nominated four times for the Rookie of the Week Award, even though a good portion of the NFL's 32 teams have already played seven games to the Bucs' six. In fact, no other player has drawn more than two nominations through the first seven weeks.
This week, Williams is up against Kansas City safety Eric Berry, Dallas wide receiver Dez Bryant, Carolina wide receiver David Gettis and Cincinnati wide receiver Jordan Shipley. The winner will be chosen by fan voting, which has already begun and will continue through noon on Friday.
Click here to go directly to the voting page and place your vote for the Buccaneers' star rookie.
Against the St. Louis Rams on Sunday, Williams helped the Buccaneers achieve an 18-17 comeback victory in the game's closing seconds. He led the Buccaneers with 82 receiving yards on five catches, several of them critical to his team's rally. In the first quarter, he caught an 18-yard pass on third-and-34 to put the Bucs in position for the Connor Barth field goal that opened the game's scoring. And in the game's closing seconds, Williams caught a short pass on third-and-10 and eluded several Rams tacklers to get the ball all the way down to the one-yard line. Two plays later, Cadillac Williams caught the game-winning touchdown with 10 seconds to play.
A Rookie of the Week will be chosen for each of the NFL's 17 regular-season weeks this season. At the end of the year, five Rookie of the Year candidates will be chosen and fans will once again get a chance to vote for the winner.
Williams has made it clear that winning the Rookie of the Year award is one of his individual goals for the 2010 season. First things first: Let's help him claim his first Rookie of the Week trophy.