As Wade Phillips recalls it, the conversation was quick and to the point, just like most NFL activity during the temporary lifting of the lockout on April 29.
"I said, 'You rush,'" Phillips recalls. "He said, 'OK.'"
And it's pretty much going to be that simple. In Phillips' version of the 3-4 defense, there is an outside linebacker whose job is almost exclusively limited to getting after the quarterback from the open side of the formation.
Think the current dominance of DeMarcus Ware in Dallas, where Phillips was head coach until the middle of last season.
Think Shawne Merriman, who flourished and came up with 27 sacks in his first two seasons with the San Diego Chargers while Phillips was defensive coordinator there.
Phillips has no concern that, at 6-foot-6, Williams might be too tall to comfortably make the transition to 3-4 outside linebacker from 4-3 end. At 6-7, Pro Football Hall of Famer Ted Hendricks certainly was able to function well as the tallest outside linebacker in league history.
The key is that Williams won't have to worry about dropping into coverage or doing anything else that involves rushing the passer.
"He's coming off the corner all the time," Phillips said. "In our system, there's no way to change that. In some 3-4 systems, they can game plan you where the guy has to drop. In our system, it's never been that way. We can make him rush every down if we want to."
Williams' weight shouldn't pose any problem to that. Although he is listed at 290 pounds, much heavier than a typical outside linebacker, Phillips said Williams told him he weighed 282 last month and that his weight fluctuates from 265 to 290.
More pros than cons
Also, working mostly from a two-point stance, he will be closer to the line of scrimmage than he was in a three-point stance, where his feet are two yards behind the line.
That appeals to Williams. It didn't appeal to Aaron Kampman, who wanted out of Green Bay after the Packers hired Dom Capers as their defensive coordinator in 2009 and learned of Capers' plan to move Kampman from a 4-3 end to a 3-4 outside linebacker. A year later, Kampman joined the Jacksonville Jaguars, who play a 4-3 and kept him at end.
"Who knows how Kampman could have done at outside 'backer?" Phillips said. "I don't know that he couldn't play it. It's just he didn't want to. Bryce Paup did pretty well (in Buffalo), then left for Jacksonville and played outside 'backer and never was heard from again.
"The player thinks one thing, but what's best for him may be something else."