Some words are spoken by men, others are lived by them. Former St. Louis Rams defensive back Aeneas Williams lives the words on theBart Starr Award he won in 2000. Williams “best exemplifies outstanding character and leadership in the home, on the field, and in the community.” The eight-time Pro-Bowler made an instant impact when acquired by the Rams on draft day in 2001. He led a resurgent defense to complement an already potent offense. The Rams finished a franchise best 14-2 during the regular season, blazing a trail to a Super Bowl appearance. Williams finished a stellar career with 55 interceptions and nine defensive touchdowns. The New Orleans native and Southern University graduate made St. Louis his home after retiring in 2004. Some athletes enjoy a quiet retirement away from the community at-large. This was not the case with Williams. He and his wife Tracy started Spirit of the Lord Family Church in 2007. The St. Louis area congregation unites Williams’ message of realizing personal potential with the mission of “raising up a wise and understanding people.” Williams believes his faith coupled with his playing experiences can help change lives. He has counseled teammates, other players and even coaches through tough times. Former Rams coach Mike Martz said talking with Williams helped him get through the team’s loss in Super Bowl XXXVI. “He’s the one guy I trust completely to be absolutely honest with me,” Martz said. Williams is the very picture of sportsmanship – a portrait painted with the colors of respect, courage, selflessness, and concern for others.
Aeneas Williams is the St. Louis Rams’ 2009 AT&T National Sportsmanship Awards honoree. Past Rams award recipients include Torry Holt, Isaac Bruce, Marc Bulger and Chris Draft.