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Poly, Maryland grad LaQuan Williams has found his way with Ravens

After shaky career with Terps, Williams almost lost faith as lockout threatened his final chance at football fame

October 08, 2011|By Jeff Zrebiec, The Baltimore Sun

Sklar admitted that there was a period of time where he was getting no calls about his client, who was "starting to panic" when the lockout was close to ending. But the Ravens got a positive recommendation on Williams from special teams coordinator Jerry Rosburg and assistant special teams coach Marwan Maalouf, and immediately had interest when the signing period began.

A total of 58 players from this year's class of undrafted free agents made NFL active rosters.

Williams, who said that he hopes he can serve as a role model to other Baltimore city kids, beat his own set of odds. When he was informed that he made the team, he hugged his "friend and brother" Smith, who called the moment something that he'll never forget. He then called his mother, who he felt that he disappointed so greatly with his period of academic struggles at Maryland. Daphne Boone called her son back several times after receiving the news because as Williams put it, 'She wanted to make sure she wasn't dreaming."

Indeed, she wasn't. In the previous eight months, her son had graduated from college and become a father.

"Being this girl's father is one of the best feelings ever," said Williams, who now lives with his nine-month-old daughter and girlfriend in Baltimore. "She's my biggest motivation."

Then he beat enormous odds to make his hometown team.

"Being here in Baltimore, we see all the hardships, we see all the things. But here's a kid who grew up in East Baltimore, went to the best public schools in the area and he made it," Johnson said. "It re-energized me as far as coaching is concerned. The kids see what's happened to him, how hard he's worked. It's not as farfetched to them anymore."

jeff.zrebiec@baltsun.com

An earlier version of this article gave the wrong record for the Ravens and state the wrong game in which Williams made his first catch. The Baltimore Sun regrets the errors.

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