Martz says “elite” Roy Williams will get 70-80 catches


If there was any doubt that Bears offensive coordinator Mike Martz was the driving force behind wide receiver Roy Williams coming to Chicago, Martz himself erased that doubt in his comments to the media on Tuesday.

Martz, who coached Williams in Detroit in 2006 and 2007, gushed about what Williams can do in the Bears’ offense. Williams, according to Martz, is “an elite player” who should get 70 or 80 catches this season.

That might sound ridiculous considering that Williams had just 37 catches last season, but it’s easy to see why Martz thinks Williams can get that kind of production: He had 82 catches for 1,310 yards and seven touchdowns in 2006 and 64 catches for 838 yards and five touchdowns despite missing four games in 2007. Williams and Martz have a track record of working well together.

The Bears’ No. 1 receiver last year, Johnny Knox, had 51 catches for 980 yards. So if Williams is capable of playing for Martz in Chicago the way he played for Martz in Detroit, he’d instantly be a huge upgrade to the Bears’ passing game.

But that’s an awfully big “if.” If Martz really thinks, after the way Williams played in Dallas, that Williams is an elite player, then Martz may be the only one.