Aeneas Williams Speaker Profile
Aeneas Williams Biography
Aeneas Williams was born January 29, 1968 and is a former American football cornerback and free safety, who played with the Arizona Cardinals and St. Louis Rams of the National Football League (NFL). He played college football for Southern University and was drafted in the third round (59th overall) of the 1991 NFL Draft.
Despite playing only one year in college, Williams' numbers impressed the then-Phoenix Cardinals enough that they selected him in the third round of the 1991 NFL Draft, Williams quickly established himself with an exceptional rookie season, tying the NFL lead for interceptions. By 1997, Williams had already notched four Pro Bowl appearances and had established himself as the Cardinals' top cornerback, routinely covering the opponents' lead receivers. In the 1998 season, Williams helped the Cardinals win their first playoff game since 1947 by intercepting two passes from Troy Aikman in a 20-7 win over the Dallas Cowboys, and added another interception in the Cardinals 41-21 loss in the divisional round. Despite playing mostly for bad teams (1998 was the only time he played on a winning team during his 10 years in Arizona), Williams was recognized as one of the best cornerbacks in the league, making six Pro Bowls in all as a Cardinal. He is regarded as one of the best defenders and players in Cardinals history, as well as one of the greatest shutdown corners of all time. In 2000, he tied an NFL record by returning a fumble (caused by Mark Maddox) 104 yards for a touchdown in a game against the Washington Redskins.
In Week 3 of the 1999 season, Williams delivered the hit which ultimately ended Hall of Fame San Francisco 49ers' quarterback Steve Young's career. Williams came in on a cornerback blitz from Young's blindside and scored a violent, but clean, hit on Young. Running back Lawrence Phillips was supposed to block Williams, but missed. This occurred on national television, a Monday Night Football game, and left Young unconscious on the field for several minutes. Young suffered a severe concussion that effectively ended his career; he didn't play again for the rest of the season, after which the 49ers all but forced him to retire.
In 2001, Williams was traded to the St. Louis Rams on draft day in exchange for picks in the second and fourth rounds. Due to roster concerns, Williams switched to free safety. As one of the leaders of a much-improved defense, Williams got a chance to play in a play in the postseason for only the second time in his career. In the Rams divisional playoff game against the Green Bay Packers prior to the Super Bowl, Williams returned two interceptions from Packers quarterback Brett Favre for touchdowns and recovered a fumble. Then in the NFC title game, he intercepted a pass from Philadelphia Eagles quarterback Donovan McNabb, with 2 minutes left in regulation, clinching the game and ensuring the Rams' berth in Super Bowl XXXVI. However, the Rams lost that game to the New England Patriots.
After a lackluster season, in which he ended on the injured reserve list, Williams quietly retired during the 2005 offseason. Over his career he accumulated a staggering 12 defensive touchdowns (9 interceptions returned for a touchdown, and 3 fumbles recovered for touchdowns), and 55 career interceptions, cementing his place as one of the most dominating defensive backs of his era. He also recovered 23 fumbles and gained 1,075 total defensive return yards (807 from interceptions and 268 from fumbles). He was also a 4-time All-Pro selection. His 268 fumble return yards are an NFL record.
On February 1, 2014, Williams was elected into the Pro Football Hall of Fame.
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Videos of Aeneas Williams Speaking
Recent Aeneas Williams Blogs
Posted on 5 February 2016 | 2:33 pm
Hall of Fame defensive back Aeneas Williams has been announced as the keynote speaker for Reeds Spring School Foundation’s Fundraising event happening on March 4th at Dolly Parton’s Dixie Stampede in the Reeds Spring area of Missouri. Attendees this year will get to see the new 2016 Dixie Stampede Show, which will be directly followed Read More
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