Brandon Williams working to get back

There are times you watch practice or even when the coaches view practice film and think Brandon Williams is DeMarcus Ware.

Yes, Ware is the All-Pro outside linebacker, who is one of the leaders of the Cowboys' defense with a fantastic first step and quick closing speed on quarterbacks and ball carriers.

Williams, at times, plays like Ware. He enters his second season with the Cowboys searching for playing time.

Last season, Williams was one of three fourth-round draft picks, but he didn't see any regular season action. He tore the ACL in his left knee in a preseason game vs. Tennesee and was done for the year.

Williams was being converted from an defensive end at Texas Tech to a outside linebacker with the Cowboys and the coaches wanted him mainly to focus on the run.

But with his quick first step, the Fort Worth native, said he's asked to play the pass more in 2010.

Ware said he might need to take a snap or two off during regular season games, and it would seem that Williams will get the call over Victor Butler, who started for Ware in New Orleans, when he recovered from a severe neck injury.

"I'm preparing myself for anything and do what I'm supposed to do," Williams said. "I have to be a professional and I'm willing to do that."

Williams said his left knee is fine, yet during the mandatory minicamp last week, he only practiced in the mornings. However, the coaches have hopes for Williams to become a third outside pass rusher they can count on.

Injuries are part of the game, and when Ware went down, Butler didn't give Phillips the confidence to give him extended playing time after his efforts against the Saints. Butler started that game, but Ware started the second half.

Williams has impressed Phillips and the rest of the coaching staff with not only that quick first step on a pass rush, but closing speed to make tackles. In the preseason, if he stays healthy, Williams should get plenty of snaps to show what he can do.

Weight wise he was asked to play at 248 pounds, but now the coaches want him at 255.

"It was hard just to get down to that," he said. "I feel like my left knee is cool. No problems, sometimes you have to ice it down, but that's just a precaution."