Cornerback Cary Williams told me at the end of minicamps that while he's his harshest critic and is never completely happy with his performance in practice, he felt like he had a solid offseason and was prepared for training camp.
Two days into camp, Williams no longer has as positive an outlook.
"To be honest with you, no I'm not [happy with my play]," Williams said today. "I'm not playing up to my capabilities at all. I feel like I'm just a little rusty, but once I shake the rust off, everything will come back in order the way in needs to be."
Williams has only been through three full practices since reporting to Westminster, but it's clear from watching the second-year corner that he isn't feeling very confident in himself right now.
During 1-on-1 drills between the receivers and defensive backs, Williams got turned around by Mark Clayton, and tripped over his own feet. He fell to the turf and also inadvertently knocked over Clayton as the wide receiver tried to make a play on the ball.
He got up, put his hands on his hips and slowly walked away, clearly frustrated with himself.
You have to wonder if some of Williams' positive mojo was lost when he was suspended by the NFL for two games earlier this month. Although head coach John Harbaugh has said that the team still has high hopes for Williams, it has to be a rough process for the cornerback to go through mentally.
That said, there's plenty of practice time left over the next month, and Williams knows that with cornerbacks Fabian Washington and Lardarius Webb still rehabbing torn ACLs and Domonique Foxworth out for the year, there are plenty of reps to be had.
"I feel like it's a great opportunity," Williams said. "It's unfortunate that one of our guys went down, but this team is a perseverant team. Coach always says that we've got guys that are talented at any position and if somebody were to go down, we've got guys that can move up. I'll try to be one of those guys."