Washington Football Team executive Doug Williams once made history with the franchise. Now he hopes to help shape its future.
Washington named Williams as its senior adviser to team president Jason Wright. The move from the football side to the business side of the building will give Williams a chance to impact key decisions awaiting the organization.
He became the first Black quarterback to play in, and win, a Super Bowl in January 1988, leading Washington to a win over Denver while being named MVP. He spent the past six seasons in personnel with the team, first as a senior executive and then as a senior vice president of player personnel.
But after Ron Rivera was hired last offseason, Williams was shifted to senior vice president of player development.
Now, he’ll assist Wright as Washington navigates pivotal changes, from the team name to its quest for a new stadium — not just where it’s built but even in planning for what the team wants.
Williams also will help with the alumni.
“Because I’ve been around, I can help them navigate certain areas they need to go,” Williams said. “I have a chance to be a part of what’s going on. It’s an impacting situation. To get a chance to work along those lines and be part of it going forward, it’s almost like being on the ground floor.”
Washington hired Wright as its president this summer. Shortly after he was hired, he talked to Williams about ideas he had for him moving forward.
The first step came to fruition Thursday.
“At my stage, when you look at a lot of other guys, they don’t get a chance to stay in the organization that gave them an opportunity to accomplish stuff,” Williams said. “And to still be able to help that organization, that’s the lucky part for me.”
Tampa Bay selected Williams with the 17th pick in the 1978 draft, making him the first Black quarterback drafted in the first round. He played five years for Tampa Bay and four with Washington. He also spent seven years working in Tampa’s front office, from 2004 to 2010.