this is a discussion within the Saints Community Forum; Gregg Williams, son Blake, cherish time together on New Orleans Saints staff When Gregg Williams and his oldest son, Blake, landed jobs on the New Orleans Saints' coaching staff a year ago, they realized a golden opportunity: One final year ...
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|02-05-2010, 12:03 AM||#1|
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Gregg Williams, son Blake, cherish time together on New Orleans Saints staff
When Gregg Williams and his oldest son, Blake, landed jobs on the New Orleans Saints' coaching staff a year ago, they realized a golden opportunity: One final year of bachelordom.
The family matriarch, Leigh Ann, remained in suburban Washington, D.C., while youngest son Chase completed his senior year at Loudon County High School in Virginia.
Middle child Amy was in the middle of her tenure at Belmont University in Nashville, Tenn.
With Blake recently engaged, father and son would live the single life for one glorious final year. They had executed a similar strategy in Jacksonville, Fla., the previous year as members of the Jaguars' staff. They leased a condo on the beach.
This time they found a furnished two-bedroom condo on the fringe of the French Quarter. The next 12 months would be spent, as Blake put it, "batch-ing" it up in New Orleans.
"We said, if we don't do it now, we're never going to do it, " Blake said.
Keeping Up with the Williamses, though, hardly has proved to be must-see reality TV. They spend 80 percent of their time at the Saints' training facility.
The rest of their week is spent sleeping or arguing.
Before the season started, the Williamses lived the typical tourist life. They toured the French Quarter, visited the Aquarium of the Americas and took in a couple of Hornets games.
Since July, though, their lives have been about as compelling as a series of C-Span reruns.
Blake said he typically sleeps at the facility Sunday through Thursday nights. Gregg, the Saints' defensive coordinator, typically doesn't arrive home before 11 p.m. and is out the door by 5:30 a.m.
Much of their free time is spent in front of a laptop, talking to family on Web cams, listening to Chase's high school games, or -- what else -- breaking down more game video.
Their idea of a night out consists of grabbing a burger at their favorite neighborhood restaurant, Port Of Call, on Friday night.
The Kardashians they are not.
"That's all we do, " Blake said. "We're coaches. We're grinders."
To say the Williams boys could use a woman's touch would be an understatement. Blake routinely shocks fiancée Kelly with the duo's slovenliness and disinterest in proper nutrition.
It's not uncommon for her to stock the Williams' fridge with food on one of her trips to town, only to find the same produce molding on the shelves during her next visit.
"She'll say, 'You guys didn't throw this out, ' and we're like, 'You're the last person to open this refrigerator a month ago, ' " Blake joked. "It's like a frat house."
And like any good frat house, things can get a little rowdy. But not like you'd think. Their fiery personalities and smoldering intensity can lead to fireworks.
"Unfortunately for him, the apple didn't fall far from the tree, " Gregg said. "He's a lot more like his dad than his mom."
Defensive line coach Bill Johnson found himself caught in the middle of a Williams sparring session several times during his early days with the team while waiting for his family to move to town last winter. He refereed several Williams vs. Williams face-offs.
"It wasn't just football, " Johnson said.
"It was arguing over the car or dinner. It got to be pretty funny. I would come down (to the hotel restaurant) every night and say, 'Can I stay or are you all going to argue?'
"You've got two smart people thinking one's smarter than the other, " Johnson joked. "They agree on 99 percent of everything, but that one percent is messing the whole deal up."
Maybe it's good then that Sean Payton moved Blake to the offensive side of the ball when he hired him. The regimented nature of their schedules keeps them apart for most of the week, even with their offices only 20 feet apart. Blake's duties as offensive coaching assistant are so demanding he sleeps on an inflatable mattress on the floor to allow him more time to study video and compile the advance scouting reports on the upcoming opponent that make up the bulk of his job responsibilities.
Blake laughed when his father got sick last month and someone chided him about avoiding the contagion.
"You don't understand, " he said. "The last four days I have not literally seen or talked to him other than from 20 yards across the practice field."
Rare as it may be, the elder Williams cherishes every fleeting minute of his father-son time. The son of a coach and a 30-year veteran of the business, Gregg knows he'll never get back the time he missed during Blake's playing careers at Clarence (N.Y.) High School and Princeton. He wanted to avoid a "Cats in the Cradle" scenario.
When Blake decided to become a coach, Gregg included him in his future coaching plans. The Wiliamses became a package deal for teams interested in hiring Gregg as their defensive coordinator.
"He had a great high school career up there in New York, but there were a lot of times that I wasn't around, " Williams said. "I'm catching up now. To share this experience with him is very special."
Gregg Williams, son Blake, cherish time together on New Orleans Saints staff | Super Bowl Central - - NOLA.com