Cowboys' Williams still has grand goal

IRVING, Texas -- The Dallas Cowboys' No. 1 wide receiver leads the team with three drops and isn't ranked among the top 50 receivers in the league in catches.

Roy Williams has just 12 receptions (fifth on the team) for 230 yards (fourth).

This can't be the same receiver for whom the Cowboys traded three draft picks to Detroit in October 2008. And when you see his $45 million contract, one starts to wonder just what the Cowboys have.

"I know I can play," Williams said before practice Wednesday. "But the attitude stays the same because this is a good football team. I don't wish ... but I wish some of these guys could go to less fortunate teams and see.

"I've been on the flip side. Now that I'm on this side, it's ... man."

The flip side was Detroit, where the Lions went 21-48 and never finished better than third place in the NFC North in Williams' nearly five seasons. He earned a Pro Bowl berth in 2006, but his yards, catches and touchdown totals declined after that season.

Last season, Williams' combined totals were 36 catches for 430 yards and two touchdowns between the two teams. All were career lows.

Williams and the Cowboys said this season would be different. He would have a full offseason and training camp to work with quarterback Tony Romo.

Yet all it's produced is a few boos, especially after two drops against Atlanta last week.

"I would rather miss a block and we get tackled for a 5-yard loss than drop a ball," Williams said.

Williams has three bruised ribs that give him discomfort. He missed the Kansas City game with the injury and is coming back slowly.

The emergence of Miles Austin hasn't helped Williams, as he still draws double-coverages from defenses. And when Williams does get open, he doesn't get the ball too frequently.

Romo and Williams speak during and after games about routes and types of passes, but nothing seems to be working well at this stage of the season.

Williams, however, believes he can still surpass 1,000 receiving yards this season.

"I still got 10 more games," he said. "I'm still looking for 1,000 yards in the next 10 games. A hundred yards a game, that's simple to do."

Calvin Watkins covers the Cowboys for ESPNDallas.com. E-mail calvin.watkins@espn3.com.