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New Jets DC Gregg Williams: ‘Culture beats strategy’

New York Jets defensive coordinator Gregg Williams addressed the media for the first time on Thursday since taking the job back in January, and the reputation that preceded the fiery coach shined through in his opening remarks.

After saying, “Hello, hello,” to the assembled media, Williams showcased the kind of personality they will be dealing with throughout the upcoming season.

“The reason I keep getting hired is culture,” Williams said, per the New York Post. “And culture beats strategy any day of the week. It’s about how you find ways in yourself to be tougher, how you find ways to play harder, play smarter, for longer than any opponent you go against.”

Williams arrived to the Jets coming off an outstanding performance serving as interim head coach for the Cleveland Browns after Hue Jackson was cut loose in late October last season. Overall, Williams instilled a sense of discipline while turning around a reeling team, posting a 5-3 record while overhauling the oft-mentioned culture.

Williams is presumably disappointed that the Browns opted to hire Freddie Kitchens instead of permanently giving him the head coaching job. The well-traveled coach will nevertheless approach the defensive coordinator job with the Jets the same way he has every other position he has held since beginning his career back in 1990 with the Houston Oilers.

In other words, Jets players better be prepared to hear an earful out of Williams during each and every practice. On game days, though? Williams sings a different tune.

“Try to put as much external pressure on them as we can, from distractions, voice, from fake anger,” Williams said. “That type of stuff to try to get ready to play on Sundays.”

Williams is tasked with overhauling a Jets unit that ranked 25th in the NFL last season in total defense and 29th in points allowed. While there are some intriguing pieces and young talent on the Jets defense, Williams, as no-nonsense and old school as they come, has a tough challenge ahead of him.