Broncos boss John Elway said afterward that Williams was the "young anchor on the inside" that the team had been pining for. The last defensive lineman selected with the team's top pick was Trevor Pryce, also at No. 28, in 1997, and Pryce went on to become a four-time Pro Bowler.
"This guy is a little better than Trevor," Elway said in the spring. "Trevor was more of a pass rush, lighter type, quicker guy. Sylvester is very quick and sudden ... I tell you: I hope he has the career that Trevor had. Then we'll be in good shape."
Williams said he didn't start dreaming about the NFL until his junior year at North Carolina when he saw how dominant he was and started to realize he could make a career out of football.
"When I was back home a few weeks ago, I actually drove by the factory just to see where it all started. For me, that was the starting point because I realized that was a point in my life that I didn't want to return to," he said.
Notes: G Chris Kuper and C J.D. Walton were put on the P.U.P. list as they continue recovering from leg operations. ... Asked if he saw this as his best shot at a title in his 15-year NFL career, CB Champ Bailey retorted: "I look at it as my ONLY shot. Nothing is guaranteed in this league. We can all be in different places next year."
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