Report: Williams will have to fight for starting gig

INDIANAPOLIS—If it wasn’t for the explosive season turned in by Miles Austin, you might have heard more, a lot more, about the flop that was Roy Williams’ season.

And what a flop the trade owner Jerry Jones made for the Dallas Cowboys in 2008. How bad is it? Coach Wade Phillips said that Williams’ starting job is in jeopardy now. It should be. That means he’s going to have to fight for playing time in a season in which he is due to earn $12.9 million guaranteed, according to Tim MacMahon of ESPN Dallas.

"We are going to play the best player, no matter what," Phillips said.

The door just swung wide open for Patrick Crayton, Kevin Ogletree or just about anyone else.

Jones forked over first-, third- and sixth-round draft picks for Williams and a seventh-round pick. Austin is now the team’s No. 1 receiver and Crayton’s stats pretty much mirror the production from Williams. See what a problem that creates for the team as it considers crafting a contract for Austin? Williams picked up a $45 million, five-year contract after the trade. Why would Austin accept less? Williams has 57 receptions for 794 yards and eight touchdowns in 25 games with the Cowboys.

Williams was a Pro Bowl performer for the Lions. Can he get back?

“I think a guy that has been a Pro Bowler like Roy, he's got to take part of it too," Phillips said. "Miles has come so far that nobody knew he was going to be that good. He has to maintain being that good, and Roy has to get to that level again."

The Cowboys and Jones better hope he reaches that level again.

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