Derrick Williams: Wikis


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Derrick Williams

Derrick Williams during his tenure at Penn State.
No. 12     Detroit Lions
Wide Receiver
Personal information
Date of birth: July 6, 1986 (1986-07-06) (age 23)
Place of birth: Greenbelt, Maryland
Height: 6 ft 0 in (1.83 m) Weight: 194 lb (88 kg)
Career information
College: Penn State
NFL Draft: 2009 / Round: 3 / Pick: 82
Debuted in 2009 for the Detroit Lions
Career history
 As player:
Roster status: Signed Draft Pick
Career highlights and awards
  • 2005 All-Big Ten Freshman Team
  • 2007 Outback Bowl champion
  • 2008 First-Team All-Big Ten Team
Career NFL statistics as of Week 17, 2009
Receptions     6
Receiving Yards     52
Touchdowns     0
Stats at

Derrick Williams (born July 6, 1986) is an American football wide receiver for the Detroit Lions. He was selected by the Lions with the 18th pick of the 3rd round of the 2009 NFL Draft. He was a wide receiver and 2008 team captain[1] for the Penn State Nittany Lions.


High school

Williams was widely regarded as the top high school football prospect of 2005, coming out of Eleanor Roosevelt High School in Greenbelt, Maryland.[2] He received scholarship offers from more than 50 Division I schools. Relentless recruiting forced him to twice change his cell phone number.[2]

Williams initially made a verbal commitment to the University of Florida, but re-opened his recruiting after the firing of head coach Ron Zook.[2] He strongly considered offers from Texas, Oklahoma and Tennessee, before signing a Letter of Intent with Penn State.[2] Penn State was coming off four losing seasons in five years, and head coach Joe Paterno was under increasing pressure to retire. Williams relished the challenge of returning the Penn State program to its former stature, saying "I did it because I trusted in [Paterno]. He promised me I could help turn the program around and leave my mark there, which I did."[2]

College career

As a true freshman, Williams was spectacular at quarterback, running back, wide receiver and defensive back. His touchdown catch late in Penn State's matchup with Northwestern that year won the Lions that game and was nominated for a Game-Changing Performance of the Year. It was part of an explosive, four-touchdown start that was cut short by a broken arm he suffered during the Nittany Lions' October 15, 2005 loss against the University of Michigan, the team's only loss that season.

The Sporting News named Williams to the freshman All-Big Ten Conference team despite having played just seven games in 2005. He was named to the preseason All-Big Ten second-team for the 2006 season by The Sporting News.[1]

In the 2006 year he returned at wide receiver for the Nittany Lions, but registered just two touchdowns all season. He played both running back and wideout in the Outback Bowl, helping Penn State to a 20-10 win against Tennessee.

He began the 2007 season with only 6 catches for 45 yards in his first two games, but had an electrifying 78 yard punt return touchdown against Notre Dame, his second career special teams touchdown. He ended the season with 55 receptions for 529 yards and 3 touchdowns. He also had 16 rushing attempts for 101 yards and a touchdown. He had a season high ten catches for 95 yards and one Touchdown vs. in a 26-19 win over Purdue.

Prior to the 2008 season, Williams was nominated to the Maxwell and Biletnikoff Award watchlists.[3]

Williams became the first player under the coaching of Joe Paterno to score a touchdown on a catch, run and kick return in the same game, when he accomplished the feat against the Illinois Fighting Illini on September 27, 2008. The Nittany Lions won the game 38-24.[4] Williams was named the Big Ten special teams player of the week following the Nittany Lions victory.[5] At the end of the 2008 season, he was named a first team All-Big Ten selection.[6] He ended the season with 44 catches for 485 yards and a career high four touchdown receptions. In his final game, the 2009 Rose Bowl loss to Southern California, he had a fourth quarter touchdown reception.

Professional career


2009 NFL Draft

At the 2009 NFL Combine, Williams ran 4.68 seconds in the 40-yard dash. He recorded a slower time than anticipated partly because he had the flu.[7] Williams was selected 82nd overall by the Detroit Lions. He is represented by fellow Penn-Stater Chafie Fields.

Pre-draft measureables
Ht Wt 40-yard dash 10-yd split 20-yd split 20 ss 3-cone Vert Broad BP Wonderlic
6-0 * 194 lb * 4.68 * 33 in. * 15 *

(* represents NFL Combine)[8]

Detroit Lions

Williams was drafted by the Detroit Lions in the third round (#82 overall) of the 2009 NFL Draft. He signed a three-year contract with the team on July 29, 2009.[9]


Williams has a longtime friendship with former Nittany Lion linebacker LaVar Arrington. The two first met during Arrington's stint with the Washington Redskins, when Williams was playing high school football in nearby Greenbelt, Maryland.[10] Arrington gave Williams the nickname "Jesus Shuttlesworth," after the lead character—a highly-coveted high school recruit—in Spike Lee's He Got Game.[10]

Williams trains with an athletic group known as The Stable, with whom he has worked out with since he was 10 years old, working on speed, agility, and endurance.[11]


  1. ^ "Nittany Lions Announce Captains for 2008 Season". Pennsylvania State University. Retrieved 2008-04-29. 
  2. ^ a b c d e Niyo, John (2009-05-09). "Derrick Williams has new program to revive". The Detroit News. 
  3. ^ "Evans Named To Bednarik And Williams To Maxwell Award Watch Lists". Penn State Intercollegiate Athletics. 2008-07-01. Retrieved 2008-09-29. 
  4. ^ Ivan Maisel. "Williams' touchdown trifecta sparks Nittany Lions". Retrieved 2008-09-28. 
  5. ^ "Michigan, Northwestern and Penn State Football Players Honored After Big Wins: Bachér, Graham and Williams pick up weekly football accolades". Big Ten Network. Retrieved 2008-09-30. 
  6. ^ "2008 All-Big Ten Conference Football Team: As selected by Conference Coaches" (PDF). Retrieved 2008-11-25. 
  7. ^ "Wideout way out of range for Bears now after Heyward-Bey flies in 40". 
  8. ^ "NFL Events: Combine Top Performers". 
  9. ^ "Lions sign 3rd-round pick Williams to 3-year deal". Chicago Tribune. 2009-07-31.,0,6728827.story. 
  10. ^ a b Langenbacher, Josh (2008-10-14). "Arrington tutors protégé Bowman". The Daily Collegian. Retrieved 2008-10-15. 
  11. ^ Toney, Derek. "The Stable’ draws a crowd". Retrieved 2007-07-19. 

External links


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