Dolphins running back Ricky Williams had some unflattering things to say about his team and coach Tony Sparano on 560-AM down in Miami (via Ben Volin of the Palm Beach Post).
But he did have a few things about the Patriots and the way they played in Sundayís 38-7 victory. And itís a powerful and impressive testament to what kind of team the Patriots are to this point:
ďUsually after a rough season thereís a sense of relief when itís over with, but I didnít feel like that,Ē he said. ďItís the contrast with what they have going on in New England and what we have going on here, and itís a very stark contrast.
ďThey had less to play for than we did Ö and they played harder than any team we played all year, and I just expect that from my team,Ē Williams said. He added, ďIím not angry at my teammates. Iím angry at the situation. Thatís the coaches, myself, teammates, thatís everyone. Thatís the whole environment that we have there, and Iím just frustrated that itís not better.Ē
"They had less to play for than we didÖand they played harder than any team we played all year."
I donít know if thereís a higher compliment you can pay to a coach and a program than that quote. So hatís off to Bill Belichick.
Williams also brought up Patriots linebacker Rob Ninkovich, a former Dolphin: Williams gave the example of Rob Ninkovich, whom Sparano and the Dolphins cut in 2008, as a player who thrived in a more positive environment. Ninkovich had three sacks and two interceptions against the Dolphins this year as the Patriotsí starting outside linebacker.
ďItís not based on him necessarily making plays, itís just based on him buying into a winning tradition,Ē Williams said.
It's funny, I spoke to a Dolphins running back after the game because he's about to become a free agent and could fit with the Patriots. It was Ronnie Brown, not Williams, who will also be a free agent. (I was also going to talk to Williams, but he didn't seem to be in the mood)
I could definitely see Williams in a Patriots uniform next year filling Fred Taylor's role. Williams has less miles and is more durable. And Nick Saban, Belichick's pal, absolutely loved coaching Williams with the Dolphins.
So, something to think about.