ASHBURN, V.A. - Trent Williams really wanted to be in camp. How badly? Badly enough to not sleep much last night.
Just hours after signing a six-year, $60 million contract, with $36.75 million guaranteed, Williams was on the field practicing with the Redskins. As he noted, it was all because his agents, Ben Dogra and Vincent Taylor, worked overtime to get his contract signed before today.
"[My agents] were up for 48 hours straight," Williams said, adding that he received a call at 4:30 in the morning when his deal was finalized. He also said that he switched agents because he felt his new ones could get a deal done quicker.
"I really didn't want to miss the first day, but it would have really bothered me if I missed the second day," he said. "I'm still a young guy learning the offense, and if I'm going to be plugged in at a key position, I can't be out too many days. This is a new offense, so we need chemistry, and if I'm not there, I don't have it."
Williams was tested right away. On one of the first plays of the scrimmage, the Redskins sent a blitz his way and he struggled to pick it up. However, from there, his play improved dramatically, and he was able to shut down top outside linebacker Brian Orakbo a number of times.
"He looked good, for the most part," guard Derrick Dockery said. "It was hard to see - I'm out there playing next to him, but I talked to Rocky [McIntosh], and he said [Trent] was very explosive, very powerful. He knows the moves for eight guy [rushes], and has all the tools."
Mike Shanahan said he was very happy about the fact that Williams was so eager to get to training camp.
"Very much so," he said when asked that question. "I've been very encouraged by how he's worked in our offseason conditioning program, how well he's played the left tackle position. He's a very talented young man that's worked very hard since he's been here, and I think he'll do a lot of great things in the near future."
Williams said he was hazed a bit, as all rookies are, about his new paycheck. He had to carry pads, and nobody really had to ask him. But he still had a big smile on his face because he was happy to simply be out competing on the football field without his contract status hanging over his head.
"It's the first day of pads. It's real vital that I get out here," he said, matter of factly.