Caleb Williams Opens Up About His Strained Relationship With Spencer Rattler At Oklahoma, And How It Forced The Bears To Make A Huge Trade Before Drafting Him

Caleb Williams and Spencer Rattler warming up.
Caleb Williams and Spencer Rattler (Photo by Brian Bahr/Getty Images)

Caleb Williams offered some interesting comments about his time at Oklahoma which may explain why the Chicago Bears acted quickly to trade Justin Fields well ahead of the 2024 NFL Draft.

The Bears will use the first overall pick of next week’s draft on Caleb Williams, widely regarded as one of the best QB prospects of the 21st century. Chicago essentially confirmed that they were planning to draft Williams after dealing Fields to the Pittsburgh Steelers last month in exchange for a late-round pick.

Williams began his career with the Oklahoma Sooners in 2021. At the time, fellow 2024 NFL Draft prospect Spencer Rattler was viewed as the way-too-early front-runner to go first overall in the 2022 Draft.

During his appearance on “The Pivot Podcast”, Williams admitted that things grew tense and Oklahoma because he wanted to start over Rattler. Williams, of course, wouldn’t get his chance until mid-season, when then-HC Lincoln Riley benched Rattler:

“I told people before I went there that I was going to start and play and beat him (Rattler) out. I thought I’d beat him out in Spring and he was projected No. 1 and all of that. He started for six games, and so, I kept preparing…

I came to him (Riley) and asked him ‘How do I do it? How do I beat this dude out?’ Because he never let me get reps with the first team, he never let me get reps with the older guys and things like that. So I took advantage of my reps I got, I put my head down, and at a certain point, I felt like I beat him out. At some point, I went up and asked Lincoln again, I said ‘how do I beat him out?’ He told me ‘keep going,’ he didn’t give me any other advice, so that’s his words that he told me….

I was so angry, so frustrated, because that wasn’t what I wanted to hear, because I felt like I was the best. I felt like I could have helped us win all the games, getting more reps, and I didn’t get those reps.”

Williams stated that once he got his chance in replacing Rattler at Oklahoma, he ensured that the latter wouldn’t get the starting job back. Williams, of course, would end up transferring to the USC Trojans program with Riley anyway. Rattler transferred to South Carolina to revive his career.

With Williams already enduring one major quarterback controversy at Oklahoma, the Bears were smart to ensure that they didn’t have to go through this again. The 2022 Heisman Trophy winner won’t face any competition whatsoever with Fields being traded to Chicago.

Caleb Williams Can Change Everything For The Bears

As good as Fields looked at times last season, it’s clear that the Ohio State product just doesn’t have the same game-changing abilities as Williams. So the Bears were wise to kindly grant Fields a fresh start while practically ensuring that Williams will be the day one starter.

With Keenan Allen, DJ Moore, D’Andre Swift and Khalil Herbert rounding out a deep set of playmakers, the pieces are there for Williams to produce immediately as a pro.

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