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Romo-to-Roy still work in progress for Cowboys

CARROLLTON, Texas -- Roy Williams figures it is pointless to watch film from his 10 games with the Dallas Cowboys last season. There is nothing the receiver really wants to see.

"Maybe if I watch T.O. or something," Williams said. "But I'm not going to watch myself block all day long. ... I didn't get many opportunities to catch a ball, which was tough on me because I know what kind of player I am."

But with Terrell Owens gone, Williams now gets his chance to be Dallas' top receiver.

Considering what the Cowboys gave up to acquire Williams in the middle of last season, including first- and third-round draft picks and a $45 million contract extension through 2013, that is what they expect.

"The pressure's on me," Williams said. "The expectations are big. But that's fine. That's how I want them to be."

The offseason work began in February, a month before Owens was released, when Williams started running routes and catching passes from Tony Romo. The final organized team workouts are at this week's minicamp until training camp opens in late July.

"Oh, we're close. There's still little things, still routes," Romo said. "It's not just about running a route on air. It's about different coverages you're going to see and how you're going to come out of your break. ... It's our first full season. Once you see it from all of them, it's easier the next go-around."

Williams arrived from the winless Detroit Lions in mid-October, right after Romo sustained a broken pinkie on his throwing hand that forced him to miss three games. Williams was then bothered by a foot problem later in the season.

He never missed any games in Dallas, but it was easy to forget at times that Williams was even there. He had 19 catches for 198 yards, with only 21 yards the past three games.

There has been widespread scrutiny, including Troy Aikman saying the deal could be "one of the biggest busts in the history of the league" if Williams doesn't turn out to be a topflight receiver in Dallas.

"When things happen the way they're supposed to happen, I'm just going to have a smile on my face," Williams said. "The only people that know I can do it is my family. They can't wait either."

Williams had a Pro Bowl season in 2006, when he caught 82 passes for 1,310 yards and seven touchdowns. The former University of Texas star had 262 catches for 3,884 yards and 29 TDs in 60 games for the Lions. He played with five different quarterbacks last season.

Now the focus is on building a relationship with Romo, and Williams knows the best way to gain the quarterback's confidence.

"Just catch the ball when he throws it to me," Williams said. "And butter him up, bring him some food, just let him borrow some money if he needs some. Just be his best friend. ... Put my arm around his neck and hug him and tell him that his girlfriend looks pretty good and go from there."

Romo said the two already have a good relationship and likes his personality.

"He's quarterback friendly with a lot of the stuff he does," Romo said. "He runs good routes."

That doesn't mean they are always in synch yet.

During one practice this week, Williams was wide open across the middle of the field and waving his hands to get Romo's attention. The pass went elsewhere, and Williams returned to the huddle with his hands on his hips.

"I let him know, but that's what we're supposed to do," Williams said.

The next pass went to Williams, a high throw that deflected off his hands. But he later had a deep over-the-shoulder catch between two defenders, grabbing the slightly underthrown ball while falling to his knee.

"Whether we had Terrell or not, we were confident that Roy Williams was going to be a player and play well," coach Wade Phillips said. "That will come along with them practicing together."

Owner Jerry Jones admits it was "optimistic" for him to think that Williams and Romo would be able to get develop a connection during the middle of last season. Jones still has no regrets about making the deal, though he will be "tremendously disappointed" if it doesn't work.

"The verdict is really still out, but I would absolutely do that trade again," Jones said earlier this offseason. "The only fair way to look at that trade is give it the benefit of how and what it does as we go ahead over the next year or two."

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