Corey Williams and Shaun Rogers were acquired on the same day in separate trades for the same reason -- to make the Browns better against the run and to crush the pocket on pass plays so the outside linebacker can get to the quarterback.
If Williams or Rogers makes the play, so much the better; Williams had seven sacks with the Packers and Rogers had seven with the Lions.
Ever since the trades were made on Feb. 29, Rogers has garnered most of the attention because he was labeled a malcontent in Detroit. He has shown none of those traits with the Browns, but labels are hard to shake.
Williams, 27, is fine with being the quiet guy on the line, and since end/nose tackle Shaun Smith is one of the biggest talkers, it is almost impossible to be verbal in the defensive line group anyway. And if Rogers' past means more ink for the former Lion and less for himself, that's all right with Williams too.
"I don't even think about that," Williams said. "I'm not here to hear anybody chant my name. I'm here to play football and make plays."
But learning how to be an end in the 3-4, where he has to tie up the offensive tackle instead of trying to run around him to get into the backfield, has been an adjustment. The coaches knew it would be and so did Williams. He would just like it to go more quickly. To that end, he has been working closely with defensive line coach Randy Melvin and getting help from some of the players who have been with the Browns for the past couple years.
"Randy's doing a great job of helping me recognizing the blocks quicker than I am on my own," Williams said. "I had to realize I'm coming from a 4-3 defense. I can't learn it all in one day. That's why I get down on myself. I'm picking it up, but I'm picking it up slowly."
Williams should know none of the coaches is upset with his progress. The man who counts most, Romeo Crennel, says Williams will be fine.
"We said there was going to be a learning curve for both those guys," said Crennel, referring to Williams and Rogers. "I can see Corey has enough talent and ability that he can be an effective player for us. As soon as he gets all the terminology and techniques down, that ability will come out."
Williams started 20 games for the Packers over the last two seasons. He totaled 98 tackles and 14 sacks.
When Williams was 15 years old, his father died from double pneumonia. Five years later, a stroke ended his mother's life. His daughter, Shakia, was born four months premature on Feb. 1, 2004. She clung to life for two weeks and then passed away. More recently, Williams' nine-year-old nephew was killed in an automobile accident.
"I've had some ups and downs," Williams said. "I'm using it as a motivator to work even harder. I can't get down and feel sorry for myself. I have to keep praying and using the talent God gave me.
"It's been rough. I get out here and do my job. Everything else I keep to myself. I'm not a loud talking guy. I'm kind of laid back."