The Buffalo Bills have had enough when it comes to second-year running back Karlos Williams.
Just two hours before the team's second preseason game against the New York Giants, Williams has been released by the team that initially drafted him. A tumultuous offseason led the Bills to this point, and the team made a statement in releasing the running back on Saturday afternoon.
The former fifth-round pick showed up to offseason workouts overweight and out of shape by football standards, and just one month later, was suspended four game by the NFL for violating the league's substance abuse policy. Williams, who enjoyed a successful rookie season with the Bills in 2015, is now subject to waivers and can be claimed by any team.
The team made the succinct announcement, without any further statement from head coach Rex Ryan or general manager Doug Whaley.
Joe B's Take
The Bills decision to part ways with Williams is going to lead to obvious speculation that something happened over the course of the last few days. The Bills stood by Williams through being both overweight by their standards, and through the four-game suspension.
The talent with Karlos Williams is obvious, after having scored nine touchdowns during the 2015 season, but following an offseason full of off-the-field incidents throughout the entire roster, the Bills have seemingly made a stand against the backup running back after multiple chances to turn his offseason and summer around.
If there was indeed something else that happened with Williams that spurred on the release, it's good to see the Bills make a stand that would send a clear message throughout the locker room. That message is this: Everyone in the locker room isn't guaranteed unlimited chances to get back on track.
This is the first time that the Bills, when necessary, have taken a hard-line stance on a player that stepped out of line off the field.
As for the on-the-field ramifications, this presents a humongous opportunity for fifth-round running back Jonathan Williams, who now not only has a chance to stick on the active roster through the first four weeks of the season, but for the entire year now that Williams is out of the picture.
The rookie ran quite well during the team's first preseason game and showed some explosiveness against the Colts, which helped his chances significantly. Now he has every opportunity to make the 53-man roster outright and stick there, along with LeSean McCoy, Reggie Bush, and Mike Gillislee.