Eagles cornerback Cary Williams brings a Super Bowl ring to Philly. Along with a little attitude, when it comes to his decision to treat the term “voluntary” literally.
Williams has chosen to skip multiple offseason practices, which are optional in name only. He defended his decision during a Friday segment with 97.5 The Fanatic in Philadelphia.
“Teams, organizations, the NFL itself hold players captive over the OTAs,” Williams told Mike Missanelli. “They say it’s not mandatory but it’s mandatory, you know what I’m saying? If you want me to be there, if you want me to play football year round, you don’t want me to not have an offseason, you don’t want me to have a personal life let me know.”
As to the team’s potential reaction to his position on that topic, Williams was blunt.
“I really don’t care,” he said. “I told them what the situation was and we had a communication and that’s what it was.”
Williams also fired back at those who think his salary mandates participation in voluntary drills.
“What kills me is people talk about how much money I make,” Williams said. “Like that’s still gonna take away from me wanting to be a great dad and a good family man. I have no off days during the season. I hope y’all understand that; there’s no off days. I can’t come to work and say, ‘Oh, my head hurts. I can’t make it today.’ Because my job requires much more than that.”
Actually, players have at least one day off per week during the season. They also get multiple consecutive days off during the bye week, and players routinely get an extra day or two after playing a Thursday night game.
But the point for now is that, in the offseason, Williams has no qualms about skipping practice time even when his teammates aren’t. Until the practices are mandatory, any player has that privilege.
That said, any player who isn’t confident in his roster spot should think twice before skipping work. He could end up involuntarily missing practice come September.