Preston Williams

WR Preston Williams To Work Out For Bills

The Bills are eyeing some wide receiver depth, and the front office is looking at a former division foe. Per Ryan Talbot of (on Twitter), the Bills will be working out former Dolphins wideout Preston Williams tomorrow. The team will also audition receiver Marcell Ateman.

The Bills are plenty familiar with Williams after the receiver spent the first three seasons of his career in Miami. The former UDFA has appeared in three career games against Buffalo, including a matchup during his rookie season that saw him haul in six catches for 82 yards.

Williams ultimately collected 428 receiving yards during that rookie campaign, with half of his season being wiped out by a torn ACL. He only put up 288 yards in half a season in 2020, and after catching only six passes in eight games in 2021, the Dolphins cut him at the end of the 2022 preseason. He spent most of last season on the Panthers practice squad, getting into one game.

Ateman, a former seventh-round pick by the Raiders, had 20 catches for his squad between 2018 and 2019. After spending the 2020 season on the practice squad, he got into a single game in 2021 before getting released. After being cut by the Cardinals at the end of the 2022 preseason, Ateman was the second-overall pick in the 2023 XFL Skill Players Draft. He ended up getting into six XFL games, hauling in 19 catches.

The Bills are clearly looking for some size at wide receiver, with both players standing at six-foot-four. If signed, the WRs would be competing with the likes of Deonte Harty, Justin Shorter, Trent Sherfield, and Khalil Shakir for one of the WR spots behind Stefon Diggs and Gabriel Davis.

Texans Working Out FA WR Preston Williams

Following the draft and free agency, the Texans have plenty of numbers at the wide receiver position. Still, it looks like they may be interested in adding a big, veteran body to the room after recently working out former Dolphins wide out Preston Williams, according to Aaron Wilson of KPRC 2.

Williams is a former undrafted free agent who declared for the draft due to a stellar junior year at Colorado State after transferring from Tennessee. During his lone season in Fort Collins, Williams dominated the Mountain West Conference with 96 catches for 1,345 receiving yards and 14 touchdowns.

He signed with the Dolphins out of college and ended up not only making the 53-man roster but earning a starting role, as well. Williams started his first seven game before ultimately suffering a season-ending ACL tear in Week 8. He had 32 receptions for 428 yards and three touchdowns before going down with the injury. The 2020 season saw him follow the same pattern, starting seven of the first eight games before getting shut down with an injury for the second half of the season.

Injury troubles sporadically made him miss nine games the next season. After he failed to eclipse eight game appearances in any single season, the Dolphins waived Williams. He signed to the Panthers’ practice squad for the 2022 season but only made an appearance in the team’s season finale, appearing only in two offensive plays and seven special teams snaps. He was released by Carolina last week.

Williams provides elite size at 6-foot-4, 210 pounds but still has the athletic ability to field punts, something he did in Miami as a rookie. For Houston, he could provide another strong redzone target out wide other than Nico Collins or rookie Xavier Hutchinson. If he can earn his way to a roster spot this summer, the Texans will likely be focused on his health and ability to catch contested balls in the endzone.

Panthers Cut Jacob Eason, Preston Williams

As the Panthers prepare to begin their Bryce Young era, they have Andy Dalton in place as the No. 1 overall pick’s mentor. With Dalton under contract as a possible bridge option, the team will trim one of its holdovers from the roster.

The Panthers waived Jacob Eason on Thursday, moving their quarterback room down to three. Matt Corral, whom the then-Matt Rhule-led team traded up for during the 2022 third round, remains under contract. Corral missed all of his rookie season due to a Lisfranc injury.

In addition to Eason, Carolina cut wide receiver Preston Williams. Since showing promise as a rookie UDFA with the Dolphins in 2019, Williams has been unable to return to that production level. Although the Dolphins used the 6-foot-5 pass catcher regularly when he was healthy in 2020, injuries ended up defining his time in Miami. An ACL tear and a foot injury limited Williams to 16 games (14 starts) from 2019-20.

Williams, 26, barely played in 2021 and wound up in trade rumors during training camp last year. The Dolphins wound up cutting him, leading to a Panthers flier. A former Laviska Shenault teammate at Colorado State, Williams saw far less playing time for the 2022 Panthers. He suited up for one game last season.

That matches Eason’s output. The former Georgia and Washington starter attempted five passes during another season of Panthers quarterback instability. Eason, 25, has now been cut from two Frank Reich-led teams.

The Colts drafted Eason in the 2020 fourth round but waived him a year later, with 2021 sixth-round pick Sam Ehlinger becoming the primary backup to Carson Wentz and then Matt Ryan. Eason spent 2022 with three teams. After the Seahawks cut him, the Panthers added him to their practice squad. Carolina released Eason from its P-squad, leading to time with the 49ers, but circled back to him via a reserve/futures deal in January.

While Corral landed in trade rumors earlier this year, he remains Carolina’s third-string quarterback heading into OTAs. With Young and Dalton around now, however, the Ole Miss product’s Charlotte future is foggy.

Minor NFL Transactions: 1/7/23

Today’s minor transactions heading into the final Sunday of the regular season:

Arizona Cardinals

Atlanta Falcons

  • Promoted from practice squad: WR Josh Ali

Baltimore Ravens

Buffalo Bills

Carolina Panthers

Chicago Bears

Cincinnati Bengals

Cleveland Browns

Denver Broncos

Detroit Lions

Houston Texans

Indianapolis Colts

Jacksonville Jaguars

Los Angeles Chargers

Miami Dolphins

Minnesota Vikings

New England Patriots

New York Giants

New York Jets

Pittsburgh Steelers

San Francisco 49ers

Seattle Seahawks

Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Panthers Add DL Henry Anderson, WR Preston Williams

After not making the Patriots’ 53-man roster, Henry Anderson landed another opportunity. The Panthers signed the veteran defensive lineman Monday.

An interior D-lineman who has spent time with the Colts, Jets and Patriots, Anderson has seven years’ experience. Much of that came as a starter. Anderson, 31, has started 43 games as a pro. He will join a Panthers defensive line that houses Derrick Brown and free agency addition Matthew Ioannidis as its top interior players.

The team also reached an agreement Monday to bring in former Dolphins wide receiver Preston Williams. While Anderson landed on Carolina’s active roster, Williams is joining the team’s practice squad. The Dolphins waived Williams last week.

Williams follows Laviska Shenault as new Panther receiver additions. The latter landed in Charlotte via trade from Jacksonville. A former UDFA who had begun to play a key role for the Dolphins as a rookie, Williams has battled injuries in years since. Miami adding the likes of Tyreek Hill and Cedrick Wilson Jr. this offseason, which came a year after the franchise traded up to No. 6 overall for Jaylen Waddle, led to Williams not making the cut.

Anderson spent three seasons with the Colts and Jets, respectively, and tallied a career-high seven sacks for Gang Green in 2018. The Stanford alum has otherwise been known more as a run defender. Sack stats did not continue for Anderson in New York, but he did combine for seven tackles for loss from 2019-20. The Patriots signed the 6-foot-6 defender to a two-year, $7MM deal in 2021. A pectoral injury sustained in October of last year ended his season, however.

Williams totaled 32 catches for 428 yards in eight 2019 games, but an ACL tear ended that run. A former Shenault teammate at Colorado State, Williams could not re-establish himself in Miami. A foot injury halted his 2020 season after eight games, and he only played in eight contests last year. The Dolphins shopped Williams this summer and received inquiries. But no trade came. The 6-5 pass catcher will look to work his way onto Carolina’s active roster soon.

Dolphins To Cut WRs Preston Williams, Lynn Bowden

Both Preston Williams and Lynn Bowden came up in recent trade rumors, but no deals emerged. Instead, each young wide receiver is now on the waiver wire.

The Dolphins cut both on Tuesday, per’s Adam Schefter and’s Tom Pelissero (Twitter links). Miami’s trade inquiries did not fall entirely on deaf ears, at least in Williams’ case. Multiple teams reached out about the former UDFA, Pelissero adds. But he can now be acquired via waiver claim.

One year remains on Williams’ contract, while Bowden’s rookie deal has two years left. Williams, whose NFL path has been a bit complicated based on his rookie-year offseason, has two years left on his initial NFL deal.

The Raiders drafted Bowden in the 2020 third round but traded him to the Dolphins before he played a down in Las Vegas. The gadget-type weapon was one of many 2020 Raider draftees not to be long for the organization. He caught 28 passes for 211 yards for the Dolphins as a rookie but did not play in 2021.

Williams emerged as a quick study in 2019, when he caught 32 passes for 428 yards in just eight games. That Dolphins team was light at receiver alongside DeVante Parker, but it became even lighter when Williams suffered a torn ACL. Williams has never seen his value restored since that injury, and the Lisfranc problem he encountered in 2020 compounded his health issues. Over the past two seasons, Williams has not matched his rookie-year yardage total.

The Dolphins, who nontendered Williams as an RFA this year before re-signing him at a reduced rate, also added some talent at receiver (Tyreek Hill, Cedrick Wilson Jr.) this offseason.

AFC East Notes: Williams, Bills, Sauce, Jets

Mentioned as dangling Preston Williams in trades earlier this month, the Dolphins have not ruled out adding an asset for the young wide receiver. Williams is generating some trade interest, Aaron Wilson of tweets, but this looks like a situation that will either produce a deal for a late-round pick or Williams being waived before rosters are finalized Tuesday. Teams have until 3pm CT tomorrow to cut to 53. The Dolphins made some adjustments at receiver this offseason, trading for Tyreek Hill and adding Cedrick Wilson Jr. The team already cut Mohamed Sanu on Monday, however, potentially keeping the door open for Williams to stick as a backup. Williams emerged as a key target for the skeleton-crew 2019 Dolphins edition, but his rookie-year ACL tear threw his career off course. He has just 359 receiving yards over the past two seasons.

Here is the latest from the AFC East:

  • In the wake of the Bills jettisoning embattled punter Matt Araiza, they have gotten to work on finding his replacement. Michael Palardy, Ty Long, Tyler Newsome and Joseph Charlton worked out for the team, Mike Garafolo of tweets. None have been signed. Two of these punters, as it often goes with the Bills, have Panthers histories. Though, Palardy — a Carolina punter from 2016-19 — is the only one with ties to Buffalo’s Brandon BeaneSean McDermott duo. Charlton was Carolina’s punter in 2020, long after the Bills had hired Beane and McDermott. These workouts also came before two veteran punters — Brett Kern and Sam Martin — were informed of their respective releases by the Titans and Broncos. The Colts signed the punter the Bills recently waived (Matt Haack) last week.
  • Bills left tackle Dion Dawkins created some cap space for his team recently, restructuring his contract. Dawkins’ reworking created more than $5.6MM in space for the Bills, Tom Pelissero of tweets. The Bills moved Dawkins’ 2022 base salary down to $1MM and added two void years to spread out his cap hits, per OverTheCap. Dawkins remains signed through 2024; the Bills hold just more than $11MM in cap space.
  • The Jets will not spend any regular-season time developing Sauce Gardner as a backup. The No. 4 overall pick will be a Week 1 starter, Robert Saleh said. Gardner’s expected ascent will move Bryce Hall to a backup role, with the Jets also having signed D.J. Reed in free agency.
  • Isaiah Wynn looks to remain available in trades for a Patriots team that has moved him to right tackle. Additionally, when Trent Brown re-signed with New England, he was not made aware the organization was planning to move him back to the left side.

Dolphins Shopping WRs Preston Williams, Lynn Bowden Jr.

The Dolphins have made a number of additions at the receiver position this offseason, leaving them with the possibility of a roster crunch at the end of the summer. In advance of potentially having to move on from some depth options, the team is looking to get any compensation it can before cutdowns. 

[RELATED: Dolphins Trade TE Shaheen To Texans]

Miami has “talked to other teams about potentially moving” Preston Williams and Lynn Bowden Jr., reports Sports Illustrated’s Albert Breer. The pair were in line for rotational roles before the offseason began, but face an even steeper path to significant playing time after the Dolphins’ additions of Tyreek Hill via trade, Cedrick Wilson and Mohamed Sanu in free agency and Erik Ezukanma in the fourth round of the draft.

Williams took to Twitter last week to show his frustration with the lack of opportunity he is likely to receive if he remains in Miami. The 25-year-old flashed potential as a rookie with 428 yards and three touchdowns, but has seen his playing time decrease since. The former UDFA has intriguing size (six-foot-five, 220 pounds) and has one season remaining on his contract at a cap hit of less than $1.3MM.

Bowden came to the Dolphins in a much different fashion to Williams, but is now in a similar situation. After a unique college career at Kentucky which saw him produce as a returner, receiver and passer, he was traded from the Raiders before his rookie season began. During that campaign, he totaled 243 scoreless scrimmage yards; a hamstring injury kept sidelined for 2021. His skillset would likely be made redundant in what is expected to be a run-after-catch based offense, given the presence of not only Hill, but 2021 first-rounder Jaylen Waddle as well.

Given their lack of NFL success, the return Miami would receive for either player would be minimal. Still, they will be names to watch as the offseason continues.

Latest On Dolphins WR Preston Williams

The Dolphins have been one of the most aggressive teams this offseason with respect to offensive additions. Their receiving corps has been augmented both via trade and free agency, leaving one of their incumbent wideouts unhappy with his projected role. 

Preston Williams took to Twitter last night to state that he “just want[s] [an] opportunity” (link). His largest workload came in his rookie season, when he started seven of the eight games he played in. He turned 32 catches into 428 yards and three touchdowns that year. His appearance and start totals remained the same in 2020, but his playing time, targets and receptions all dropped off significantly.

This past season, Williams saw the field for a career-low 32% of the Dolphins’ offensive snaps. The limited role, along with an historic rookie campaign by Jaylen Waddle, led to the six-foot-five, 220-pounder recording just six catches. It came as little surprise when the Dolphins declined to tender the former UDFA, but they still brought him back on a one-year deal this offseason.

This season, the Colorado State alum faces a long list of competitors for targets in Miami’s offense. Waddle will be joined as a starter by Tyreek Hill and Cedrick Wilson at the position. Franchise-tagged tight end Mike Gesicki has also established himself as a dependable option in the passing game, so Williams is likely in store for a repeat of 2021 in terms of usage. His age (25), size and efficiency (14.1 yards per catch average) could, on the other hand, make him an intriguing target for outside teams either via trade this year of free agency next spring.

Dolphins To Re-Sign Preston Williams

The Dolphins will re-sign Preston Williams to a one-year deal (Twitter link via’s Tom Pelissero). Williams can earn up to $1.99MM on the contract, according to Barry Jackson of the Miami Herald (Twitter link).

[RELATED: Dolphins To Sign Wilson]

Williams joined the Dolphins as an undrafted free agent in 2019. He’s since appeared in 24 games for Miami, notching 56 grabs for 787 yards and seven touchdowns. Williams has impressed at times, including his rookie year when he managed 32 receptions for 428 yards and three TDs in eight games.

Still, injuries and other issues have sidetracked him. That aforementioned rookie year ended with an ACL tear and his 2021 was cut short by a foot injury. Williams has played in exactly eight games in each of his three seasons, losing ground on the depth chart with time. As a result, the Dolphins were hesitant to cuff the restricted free agent with a $2.6MM tender.

Now that he’s back in the fold, he’ll fight for playing time alongside WRs DeVante Parker, Jaylen Waddle, and Cedrick Wilson.