Jamaal Williams dedicates game ball to great-grandfather in emotional interview after Lions beat Packers


Jamaal Williams was going through a whirl of emotions after the Lions’ Week 18 victory over the Packers on Sunday night at Lambeau Field

Williams set a franchise record with 17 rushing touchdowns, breaking the mark set by Barry Sanders in 1991. After the game, he said he dedicated the game ball to his great-grandfather, who died recently.

MORE: How Williams and the Lions sank the Packers at Lambeau 

“I’m just grateful to do this for him,” a tearful Williams said. “I’m just grateful for him to be in my life and I’m grateful to be able to play football and do this for him. Lot of memories, lots of emotions happening right now, but I’m just grateful to be able to play this game for my great-grandfather and I’m glad that he’s looking down on me and I know I’m making him proud.”

MORE: Williams references Naruto in viral ‘SNF’ intro

After that, the tenor of the interview changed dramatically. Williams turned his attention to the people who doubted the Lions heading into the “Sunday Night Football” matchup, calling attention to the fact that everyone on NBC’s “Football Night in America” pregame show picked the Packers.

“Stop playing us, man. We (are) the Detroit Lions. We (are) the Detroit Lions. Stop playing with us,” Williams told NBC sideline reporter Melissa Stark. “I don’t even watch TV, but I heard everybody already picked the Packers over us. Stop playing with us. That’s all I got to say, man. Don’t let these tears fool you. It’s all dog around this mug.”

The Lions pulled out all the stops to end their rivals’ playoff hopes and came away with the victory. Williams finished with 72 yards and two touchdowns on 16 carries.

MORE: Packers’ Quay Walker ejected for shoving member of Lions’ training staff

Williams, who spent the first four years of his NFL career with the Packers, shared a moment at the end of the with former teammate Aaron Rodgers. The two embraced for an extended period.

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