"Mario Watch" took over Western New York in March of 2012, with fans of the Buffalo Bills on pins and needles waiting to see if the top name available in free agency would choose to sign with their favorite team. It came to fruition, and Mario Williams became a member of the Bills.
Just four years later, it's merely a memory.
The Bills announced that they ahve released Mario Williams from his current contract, and he will become an unrestricted free agent. By releasing Williams, the cap-strapped Bills will save $12.9 million on the 2016 salary cap.
Williams and the Bills seemed destined to part ways from one another this offseason, after the defensive end repeatedly made it clear through the media that the players and the scheme just weren't on the same page. Head coach Rex Ryan has made multiple comments that they will be running his scheme in 2016 exclusively, and that they won't try and meld together two different defensive styles like they did in the 2015 season.
Over four seasons with the Bills, Williams compiled 43 sacks -- but had his second-worst output of his career in 2015, with only five sacks.
In two other cap-clearing moves, the Bills also released running back Boobie Dixon and guard Kraig Urbik from the roster. Dixon will save the Bills $1.15 million, and Urbik will save $1.775 million on this year's cap.
With Williams, Dixon, Urbik, and the restructure of Charles Clay, the Bills will have cleared $23.325 million in cap space for the 2016 season.