R. Williams Offers Insight, Support On Claiborne's Injury


IRVING, Texas – Morris Claiborne didn't have to look far to gain some insight about his torn patellar tendon – roughly 20 feet across the Cowboys' locker room, in fact.

Ryan Williams' locker is situated directly across the room from Claiborne at Valley Ranch. Now a member of the Cowboys' practice squad, Williams fought through the same injury as a highly-touted draft pick for the Arizona Cardinals in 2011. After tearing the tendon during his rookie preseason, Williams was still battling back a year later – a fact he didn't mask in talking to Claiborne.

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IRVING, Texas – Morris Claiborne didn't have to look far to gain some insight about his torn patellar tendon – roughly 20 feet across the Cowboys' locker room, in fact.

Ryan Williams' locker is situated directly across the room from Claiborne at Valley Ranch. Now a member of the Cowboys' practice squad, Williams fought through the same injury as a highly-touted draft pick for the Arizona Cardinals in 2011. After tearing the tendon during his rookie preseason, Williams was still battling back a year later – a fact he didn't mask in talking to Claiborne.


"I just told him I didn't want to sugarcoat anything to him. I felt like when I got hurt, nobody gave me the situation as real as I wanted it to be," Williams said. "Nobody told me how hard it was going to be coming back, nobody told me what it was going to take coming back."

Cowboys coach Jason Garrett said Claiborne had surgery on the tendon on Tuesday. The Cowboys haven't yet placed the third-year cornerback on injured reserve, but they will, ending his season three months early. Having faced that predicament, Williams said he offered Claiborne words of encouragement – as well as a voice of experience.

"I just told him if he ever needed anything, if he ever needed [embedded_ad]

somebody to talk to – because I had sleepless nights. I had a lot of sleepless nights, man – a lot of emotional nights dealing with the whole thing," Williams said. "Just hollering at him, talking to him, letting him know that somebody is there for him that went through it."

Apart from that, Williams also told Claiborne what to expect during recovery – which promises to be a lengthy endeavor. The patellar tendon attaches the kneecap to the shin bone, and even after surgery, regaining strength is something Williams said was a battle.

"I don't even know the word to look for – it's very time consuming. I got hurt in August, and I didn't even start running until late April, early May," he said. "That's almost a whole year off, as a running back. So then you think – as a cornerback, what do they do all day? They backpedal. When you backpedal, you use your quad muscle."

Williams told Claiborne the recovery would be a test of his love for the game – he reiterated, a time consuming process. But in imparting that experience, Williams said he saw Claiborne's reaction was a determined one.

"He was just listening, and I could tell it wasn't just listening to be like 'Ok, I'm going to wait until you're done to talk.' It was listening and soaking it all in," he said. "I could tell by the look in his eyes that he wanted to be back. I have a lot of faith in him – hard-working guy, man."


"I just told him I didn't want to sugarcoat anything to him. I felt like when I got hurt, nobody gave me the situation as real as I wanted it to be," Williams said. "Nobody told me how hard it was going to be coming back, nobody told me what it was going to take coming back."

Cowboys coach Jason Garrett said Claiborne had surgery on the tendon on Tuesday. The Cowboys haven't yet placed the third-year cornerback on injured reserve, but they will, ending his season three months early. Having faced that predicament, Williams said he offered Claiborne words of encouragement – as well as a voice of experience.

"I just told him if he ever needed anything, if he ever needed [embedded_ad]

somebody to talk to – because I had sleepless nights. I had a lot of sleepless nights, man – a lot of emotional nights dealing with the whole thing," Williams said. "Just hollering at him, talking to him, letting him know that somebody is there for him that went through it."

Apart from that, Williams also told Claiborne what to expect during recovery – which promises to be a lengthy endeavor. The patellar tendon attaches the kneecap to the shin bone, and even after surgery, regaining strength is something Williams said was a battle.

"I don't even know the word to look for – it's very time consuming. I got hurt in August, and I didn't even start running until late April, early May," he said. "That's almost a whole year off, as a running back. So then you think – as a cornerback, what do they do all day? They backpedal. When you backpedal, you use your quad muscle."

Williams told Claiborne the recovery would be a test of his love for the game – he reiterated, a time consuming process. But in imparting that experience, Williams said he saw Claiborne's reaction was a determined one.

"He was just listening, and I could tell it wasn't just listening to be like 'Ok, I'm going to wait until you're done to talk.' It was listening and soaking it all in," he said. "I could tell by the look in his eyes that he wanted to be back. I have a lot of faith in him – hard-working guy, man."

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