Trent Williams limping around the Washington Redskins' locker room is a common sight. The four-time Pro Bowl left tackle limping off the sideline and onto the field on game day is an even more common sight.
He fought through a knee injury to be in the lineup Sunday against the Cincinnati Bengals in London, fully understanding he'd have a rough morning after of pain.
Williams playing through injuries has become a way of life for the Redskins.
“He's done a phenomenal job now for several years of playing through injuries and he's been consistently able to go,” quarterback Kirk Cousins said. “He's continued to just work and make it a priority to be healthy and to do all he can, and every year he seems to take another step in his development in terms of finding ways to take care of his body and be on top of it.”
Williams' most recent issue was an injury to his left knee that coach Jay Gruden described as “structurally OK.” The 28-year-old had a sore right knee in training camp and a glute injury going into Week 2, and over the previous three seasons he dealt with wrist, foot, knee, shin, shoulder and kneecap injuries and a concussion.
His ability to answer the call no matter what raises the question of what exactly would it take for Williams to miss a game.
“Something has to be torn or broken,” he said. “Other than that, a sprain I can get through that. Bruises I can get through that. As long as the doctor tells me it's nothing structurally wrong with what I've got going, then I'm going to do everything I've got to do to get on the field.”
Wide receiver Pierre Garcon shakes his head because nothing about Williams playing through pain surprises him anymore. Williams has missed only three games dating to the 2012 season, and when he plays there's never a drop-off in quality or consistency.
“He plays very well,” Garcon said. “You never know that he's injured or not because he takes care of his body. He's been doing it for a long time, and he heals fast. He doesn't complain. He just keeps playing well.”
Williams joked last week that trainers could “put a little bubble gum and tape” on his knee and he'll be good to go. The 2010 fourth overall pick out of Oklahoma doesn't like to sit out and makes sure everyone knows it.
Just how Williams does it is somewhat baffling even to Gruden, who said some players can be more fortunate with injuries than others.
“He's a very flexible guy and he's a very good athlete, but he is a big guy,” Gruden said. “I don't know. He's been very fortunate so can't really put your hand on it.”
It helps that the bye week gives Williams some time to rest his sore knees, but rest assured he'll be itching to play Nov. 13 when the Redskins (4-3-1) face the Minnesota Vikings (5-2).
“If it (isn't) broke -- if I'm dealing with a pain threshold type of deal -- me and my manhood, my pride, it's going to propel me to get on the field,” Williams said. “That's how I approach it every time I get injured.”