Gratitude and good feelings abound as longtime Packers cornerback Tramon Williams retires
GREEN BAY - When the Green Bay Packers signed cornerback Tramon Williams before last season’s NFC championship game, it felt like a potential victory lap for a veteran on his way out.
The Packers didn’t get to take that victory lap with the 14th-year corner, but they did allow him to finish his career in the city where he spent 10 remarkable seasons.
Williams, who turned 38 years old Tuesday, spent part of his birthday announcing his retirement from the NFL. He arrived with the Packers in 2007 after spending his rookie season as an undrafted corner on the Houston Texans practice squad. He’ll retire with 34 career interceptions, 30 with the Packers, in 205 games.
While Williams spent two seasons in Cleveland, one in Arizona and six games last year with Baltimore, his NFL origin was at the center of his farewell message.
“To the greatest organization in the NFL, the Green Bay Packers,” Williams tweeted, “thank you for allowing a very raw athletic kid to live-out his dream. Thank you, to the late great Ted Thompson, for seeing the value in an Undrafted free agent. Thank you, Alonzo Highsmith, Zo to be exact, for finding me and pushing with everything you had to get me in. Thank you, Mark Murphy, and Russ Ball for always being so genuine. To my brother Joe Whitt, thank you for believing in me no matter what until this day! It means a lot!
“Thank you to all my teammates and coaches over the years. I got love for every one of you. Thank you to Flea and the training staff for keeping me on the field throughout my career. And to the best fans in the world, thank you for supporting me through the good and the bad. That’s the true definition of a loyal fan base.
“Thank you Gutey, for bringing me back and allowing me to finish this journey in the green and yellow 38 jersey! That meant everything to me! No matter what jersey I wore, I always carried the G! #38 is clocking out at 38!”
Williams will be remembered for his interception with 10 seconds left before halftime of the Packers’ 2010 NFC divisional playoff upset win in Atlanta. As the Falcons tried to improve their field-goal position, quarterback Matt Ryan threw a pass to the left sideline. Williams undercut the throw and returned it 70 yards for a touchdown as the clock expired.
Suddenly, a 21-14 lead had doubled to 28-14, and the No. 6 seed Packers were on their way to beating the No. 1 seed Falcons. It was Williams’ second interception in as many possessions, turning a game that would serve as the Packers’ spring board to their Super Bowl XLV victory a few weeks later.
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As Williams transitioned from being a young, unproven corner to a veteran, he became a leader in the Packers' locker room. After three seasons in Cleveland and Arizona, the Packers re-signed him in 2018 to lead their secondary. He played 761 snaps in 2019, his age-36 season.
At an age when many cornerbacks are long retired, Williams’ grit and uncommon athleticism allowed him to play at a high level.
“We want to congratulate Tramon, a true pro, on a very successful career that was filled with individual achievements and incredible contributions to team success,” general manager Brian Gutekunst told the team’s website. “He was a talented, humble and hard-working player who was a great teammate both on and off the field. We wish him, his wife, Shantrell, and their family all the best.”