Print and Go Back ESPN.com: NFC East [Print without images]

Tuesday, February 4, 2014
Terrance Williams is ready to take over

By Calvin Watkins

Rookie Terrance Williams made some mistakes for the Cowboys in 2013.

He ran two wrong routes leading to Tony Romo interceptions in victories against the New York Giants and Minnesota Vikings. There was Williams fumbling the opening kickoff against the Oakland Raiders.

Williams
Williams
Williams also had a three-game stretch when compiled just four catches for 64 yards.

But there is so much more to Williams' season, and it's time for him to take over a starting role at wide receiver. The Cowboys are expected to part ways with Miles Austin to save $5.5 million against the salary cap.

That would mean Williams would start alongside Dez Bryant in an offense expected to increase the number of passes thrown with new play-caller Scott Linehan.

Williams was a big-play threat for Romo last season with 12 catches of 20 or more yards. Overall, Williams had 44 catches for 736 yards and five touchdowns, with three of those scores going for at least 20 yards.

Williams has good speed, and improved his route running as the season progressed. Becoming reliable is the key for Williams in his development. Bryant dealt with similar questions after his rookie season, and as you saw in 2013 he produced his first Pro Bowl season.

Williams is eager to take command of the offense. He's one of those players that's very hard on himself.

During training camp practices, Williams would take mistakes -- whether it was a dropped pass or a wrong route -- hard. It was hard for him to shake things off, and during one practice, Jason Witten yelled at him for not moving on after a mistake.

Yet, Witten liked the fact Williams wanted to do well. Defenses were designed to take Bryant and Witten out of the game, so it left Williams open to make plays in single-coverage.

Williams set a franchise rookie record with a touchdown in four consecutive games.

As the Cowboys begin to look at their roster for 2014, Williams is right behind Bryant on the depth chart, and that's a positive sign going forward.