Gruden excited for Williams’ return

Buccaneers coach Jon Gruden is hopeful to have Cadillac Williams back on the team when a decision on the running back’s playing status for this season becomes official on Wednesday.

“It’s exciting. I’ve said that for a long time. It’s almost like Christmas is here. Christmas is Wednesday, I hope,” Gruden said. “We’ll see how he feels and talk to the trainers, the medical people. If my eyes don’t deceive me, I think he’s got a chance to be a player this year for our team, and that would be exciting.

“This guy’s a heck of a back. We have film to prove that. We want him to be a big part of our organization. So if he’s healthy, he’s going to play here, and if he’s not he won’t.”

Williams — who participated in contact drills with pads in Monday’s practice — will either need to be activated from the physically-unable-to-perform-list, or be placed on injured reserve and miss the entire 2008 season. Williams suffered a torn patellar tendon last season.

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