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Notebook: Day Off a Boon to CB Williams

Posted Jan 16, 2006

No practice until Wednesday allowed Darrent Williams to get quite a bit of treatment on the groin he pulled last month, and he expects to play next weekend.


Darrent Williams returned and took time to get the crowd pumped up during Saturday night's game. PHOTO: DOUG PENSINGER / GETTY IMAGES

ENGLEWOOD, Colo. -- A Sunday off, a Monday without practice and a regular off-day Tuesday could be exactly what cornerback Darrent Williams needs to recuperate from from Saturday night's divisional-round win over the New England Patriots.

But he knows that soreness will be a companion, no matter how much treatment he undergoes. The injury to his groin was too severe for him to get back to 100 percent in a month, although he said he was over 80 percent when he played Saturday.

"Of course I'm not 100 percent, but I didn't feel as bad as I did when I hurt it," Williams said Monday. "I'm not where I want to be right now, to be honest."

Nevertheless, his recovery did have him back to game action some five weeks after he pulled his groin early in the Dec. 11 win over the Baltimore Ravens -- a fairly remarkable accomplishment, given the injury.

"Any day I get off, I just come here and get extra treatment, come here and get everything right," Williams said. "I'm feeling pretty sore, but I'm going to be feeling like this from here on out."

Williams said that a combination of soreness in his groin and the Broncos' lead kept him on the sidelines during the final quarter Saturday.

"I gave three good quarters; I probably could have gone in the fourth, but we had a pretty good lead and were pretty much in control of the game," Williams said. "I said (on the sidelines), 'If you need me to go back in, I can go back in,' but the game was under control, and (the coaches) were just resting me up."

But Williams feels he'll have no problem playing Sunday.

"It's going to be hard to just keep me out of the game," he said.

SEX APPEAL: For anyone who accuses the NFL's four conference finalists of being a collectively "unsexy" group because of the absence of teams like the New England Patriots and Indianapolis Colts, right tackle George Foster has a retort.

"I'm sexy," the 6-foot-5, 338-pound Foster said. "I'll be playing in this game this weekend, so I'm sexy."

To pillory the participants in the penultimate round of the playoffs is to be cognizant of only the last two years of NFL history, and not that of the previous decades. Yes, the conference finalists of 2003 and 2004 had more wins heading into their games -- 55 and 57, respectively -- than the Broncos, Steelers, Panthers and Seahawks did in 2005. But since the NFL expanded to a 16-game schedule in 1978, there have been only six years in which the final four teams had more wins than the 54 that this year's last quartet have amassed in the regular season.

Interestingly enough, four of those six years have come since 1998, which could be perceived as casting a shadow of the concept of parity, except for the fact that only five of the 28 conference finalists since then made it back to that stage the following year.

Denver, Pittsburgh, Carolina and Seattle also represent a somewhat fresh last foursome, as only the Steelers were in a conference championship game last year. Carolina last played in the NFC Championship two years ago, while this year's trip is the first in seven years for the Broncos and 22 for the Seahawks.

"There's so much parity in the league nowadays with free agency and every year, you've got probably 12, 15 teams that are capable of taking it all the way if everything kind of lines up for them," kicker Jason Elam said. "It's good to mix it up a little bit."

BRONCOS BYTES: Sunday's game will be the first the Broncos have ever played on Jan. 22 ... Several Broncos will take part in a Friday afternoon press conference that will be televised live on the NFL Network at 2:30 p.m. MST.