Ray Willis was on the Softy Mahler show last week and though it was a short interview, he did have some interesting things to say for sure. The first thing they touched on was, of course, the lockout. Willis has been rehabbing and working out down in Florida, and he had this to say about the stalemate:
"Like most of the fans out there, it's an unfamiliar territory for a lot of us. I guess we're just trying to play the waiting game. This isn't a comfortable feeling; you got guys that want to play the game and who love the game and want to play football. You know, to do this to the fans, it hurts us, but I mean this is a business and we all know that."
They then moved on to Willis' future with the Hawks, which should be of interest to a lot of you fans out there. Mahler asked him about the selections of James Carpenter and John Moffitt and he responded, "You know what? I actually liked the selections. I thought it was a good idea to help upgrade the position. But at the same time, I think Coach Carroll has always made it his number one goal to have competition so it's always going to be open and I think anytime you have open competition it's a good thing."
So does he want to return to Seattle?
"I mean, I've been with the Seattle Seahawks for six years, and I definitely love Seattle; I love the city, I love the people, I love the team. I love where Coach Carroll's taking the team. I'd like to be involved. As of right now, it's really not up to me. It's up to Coach Carroll, and Mr. Schneider, and what they want to do. I'd love to be in Seattle again. Absolutely."
Personally, I hope they re-sign him. At worst, he's a more than capable swing tackle that can also fill in at guard. He had been a starter for the Hawks off and on in 2008 and 2009 and played solidly. He's not all-world but he's dependable and plays with a nasty streak. I have the feeling that Tom Cable, a guy rumored to have punched out one of his assistant coaches last season, would love a guy, Ray Willis, that got in a fight with his own teammate in the first practice of training camp in 2009.
"Defensive end Lawrence Jackson was locked up with Willis in a one-on-one drill Friday, and Willis held on a little too long for Jackson's taste. That elicited an openhanded smack from Jackson, and just like that, it was on. The two had to be separated.
"It happens," Willis says. "It's football. It's a man's game.""
Love this. Want this on my line. I would guess Tom Cable would too. It probably won't be super expensive; certainly less so than Stacy Andrews or Sean Locklear. He can play at different spots along the line and bring the nasty to our young trio in Russell Okung, John Moffitt, and James Carpenter. Furthermore, he's got the talent to push them to be their best; they'll have to work hard to earn the starting job. As Willis put it, anytime you have open competition, it's a good thing. In an open competition though it helps to have a guy that could actually beat you in that competition to really push a player.
Willis' knee is on the mend and he's hungry. Sign him up and bring him to camp - he'll either surprise you and earn a starting spot or he'll push our young rookies to their limit and provide a veteran backup on the line.