PHILADELPHIA -- Cornerback Cary Williams is not a fan of holding training camp practices with other NFL teams, as the Philadelphia Eagles will do later this month against the New England Patriots in Foxborough, Massachusetts.
"Maybe because I just do not like the Patriots," Williams said, referring to a sense of enmity forged while he was with the Baltimore Ravens.
Last year, the Patriots traveled to Philadelphia for three days of joint practices. Williams got involved in a fight with Patriots rookie wide receiver Aaron Dobson on the first day. Both players were removed from the rest of that day's practice. That was according to an agreement between Eagles coach Chip Kelly and his New England counterpart, Bill Belichick.
"We don't want this to turn into a wrestling match," Kelly said that day.
Williams said Friday that the fight happened only after he saw a number of things that he didn't like. He referred to the Patriots as "cheaters."
Mostly, though, Williams said he just doesn't like anything about practicing against another team. Neither side wants to show too much of its playbook, so the drills tend to be severely limited in terms of what plays are being run. Williams said he enjoyed preseason games, because they represented a break from the day-in, day-out routine of practicing against the same teammates every day. Once teams start practicing against each other, that break in the mundane is lost.
Meanwhile, Kelly was asked if he's concerned about the possibility of the NFL shortening the preseason. If there were just two preseason games, Kelly said, he would have to change the way he schedules training camp.
"I don't know," Kelly said. "Maybe you start practicing more with other teams."
Williams didn't hear that, or his head might have exploded.