Mario Williams ‘definitely’ open to staying with Bills
Mario Williams is open to trying to find a way to remain with the Bills next season.
The veteran defensive end told ESPN’s Josina Anderson on Wednesday that he “definitely” wants to play for Buffalo in 2016.
“Yes, most definitely,” Williams said. “I love my team. I love my teammates. Everything has been fine. It’s just a matter of if there can be a better understanding of being able to do what we do, at least meet half way. That’s all, meet half way.”
Perhaps more surprising, Williams hinted that he would be open to taking a pay cut.
“Yea, I mean, it all depends on what it is happening,” he said. “My thing is this — obviously I’ve had big contracts, but once you get on a team and you get around the guys, it becomes family. The guys on defense, we laugh and talk about anything. We do a bunch of stuff together on and off the field, obviously. It’s bigger than just numbers.”
Williams said he understands that the Bills need salary cap space to re-sign offensive linemen Cordy Glenn and Richie Incognito. Buffalo could save roughly $13 million in cap space by cutting Williams, so he doesn’t have much leverage if he truly wants to remain with the team.
Why is this so surprising? This is the same Williams who called out the Bills’ coaching staff over their defensive strategy during the season. One player claimed the four-time Pro Bowler had completely checked out on the team, and reports have indicated that the Bills plan to cut Williams.
At age 31, Williams would likely receive plenty of offers on the open market. But he knows he isn’t going to get the type of contract he currently has in Buffalo, so perhaps there is a middle ground somewhere. That is, of course, if Williams can learn to accept Rex Ryan’s defensive scheme.