July 27, 2012; Pittsford, NY, USA; Buffalo Bills defensive tackle Kyle Williams (95) on the field during a training camp practice at St. John Fisher College. Mandatory Credit: Mark Konezny-US PRESSWIRE
It was like watching a nightmare unfold.
Late November in Orchard Park, N.Y. the surging Pittsburgh Steelers were visiting their AFC counterparts from Buffalo, a game the Steelers should have had little problem winning by a few scores.
Weird things happen when the most underrated players in the NFL decide to host their coming out parties.
Putting all hyperbole as far to the side as possible, and admitting I was not around for the Mean Joe Greene Era, Kyle Williams had perhaps the most impressive play-to-play performance I've ever seen from a defensive tackle. He was unblockable, unstoppable and nearly undefeatable in a game the Bills, by all rights, won. And deservedly so.
Williams notched two of the five sacks the Bills laid on the Steelers, and had 10 tackles in a game where Steelers RB Rashard Mendenhall had 151 yards rushing on a career-high 36 carries - two stats in which one would think the Steelers won by two or three scores.
If not for an embarrassingly bad drop by WR Stevie Johnson, the Steelers don't win that game. Instead, K Shaun Suisham iced it in overtime with a 41-yard field goal with barely over two minutes remaining in the extra session.
Most Steelers fans just turned off the TV, preparing the standard "a win is a win" mantra for all haters who would no doubt come out of the woodwork to taunt them for a near-loss to a team that was then 2-9.
I left thinking Kyle Williams in the league's best kept secret. To an extent, he still kind of is.
Williams was second-team All-Pro in that 2010 season, making his only trip in his six-year career to the Pro Bowl. A ruptured Achilles kept him out of all but four games last season.
Joining second-year emerging DT Marcel Dareus and free agent acquisition Mario Williams, the Bills have created for themselves the makings of the best defensive line in football. Much of that will rest on Williams' recovery, and tonight is another opportunity for him to show he's still a premier defensive tackle in this game.
It's also a great test for a newly forged Steelers' interior offensive line. It's likely LG Willie Colon, C Maurkice Pouncey and RG David DeCastro will all have their moments with Williams. Considering Mario Williams is on the outside (a man who has approximately 200 sacks of Steelers QB Ben Roethlisberger over the years), double teams will be hard to come by.
The entire Bills front line is worth watching, but Williams is the one with the direct history. It had to have been the best game he's played as a pro, and people remembered his name after it.