It was a long two weeks for Buffalo Bills running back Jonathan Williams leading up to training camp. Not because of the annual excitement for rookies to get started with their first National Football League training camp, no, Williams had to have had a different sort of nervous energy before getting to St. John Fisher College.
On July 14, Williams was pulled over, arrested, and charged with driving while intoxicated in his home state of Arkansas -- still two weeks away from the beginning of training camp with the Bills. Even later, a video on TMZ appeared of his arrest, which just made the situation even worse.
Williams has stayed away from the media since camp has really begun, but on Monday, he spoke with 7 ABC Buffalo about his arrest and charges.
“I feel like everybody has regrets. Everybody has something that they’ve done, but, that doesn’t define their character,” Williams said. “I think that was my one instance. I definitely have learned a big lesson from it.”
Williams, a fifth-round pick out of Arkansas, was on the roster bubble even before his discretion in mid-July. With a few running backs vying for position to make the team outright, any misstep can take hold of a player’s spot on the depth chart.
And while the Bills haven’t didn’t offer much insight to the situation, general manager Doug Whaley did have a message for Williams when camp opened up on Friday, July 29.
“Everybody makes mistakes,” Whaley said. “It’s where you go from here.”
Williams said since he’s been back with the team, the entire organization has been incredibly supportive. Even as the interview was being conducted, one of his teammates walked in the background and said “He’s not a bad guy,” as he pointed to the running back.
“Nobody can be harder on me than myself, so to be able to feel that support from them definitely helped me try to put that in the past and stay on the right trail, on the right track,” Williams said, before unveiling his message to himself going forward.
“Just don’t let that derail me. I was already on a good path. I was already doing the right thing,” Williams said. “I just don’t want that one incident to get me off the right track that I was already on.”
The running back is due to appear in court on August 15 in Arkansas, but the Bills also have a practice that day. The NFL has yet to dole out any punishment to the rookie runner at this point in time.
|Live video, the latest news and no surveys - download the WKBW app|
|News, forecast and Bills newsletters delivered to your e-mail inbox|