Tramon Williams

Tramon Williams Retires From NFL

Free agency is plowing full steam ahead, but signings and cuts aren’t the only thing going on. We’ve also got news of a significant retirement to pass along.

Veteran cornerback Tramon Williams is hanging up his cleats, he declared in a text to Josina Anderson of ESPN.com (Twitter link). Williams entered the league as an UDFA all the way back in 2006, and improbably defied all expectations and then some to stick in the NFL for a whopping 15 seasons. For a player at his position especially, it was a run that’s nothing short of incredible in hindsight.

Today is Williams’ 38th birthday. After initially signing with the Texans he was quickly cut and then signed to the Packers’ practice squad. He would go on to spend nine seasons in Green Bay, winning Super Bowl XLV with the team. The Louisiana Tech product then went to Cleveland, Arizona, back to Green Bay again, and then Baltimore.

The Ravens waived him back on January 18th, and he signed with the Packers one last time on January 21st just in time to suit up for the NFC Championship Game, although he didn’t end up playing in the contest.

Never a star but a quality starter for many years, Williams made one Pro Bowl in 2010. He’ll finish his legendary career having appeared in a whopping 205 games with 153 starts. He’ll go down with 153 passes defended, and 34 interceptions. There was a four-year stretch from 2008-11 where he had at least four interceptions in each season.

All of us here at PFR wish Williams the best in retirement, and a happy birthday as well!

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Packers Promote CB Tramon Williams

Tramon Williams may soon be set for a historic NFL feat: suiting up for playoff games with two different teams in the same season. The Packers elevated the cornerback from their practice squad Saturday.

Green Bay signed the 14th-year cornerback earlier this week, making this Williams’ third stint with his original NFL team. But he played just last week in the Ravens-Bills divisional-round game, logging 12 defensive snaps with Baltimore.

The Ravens, however, waived Williams soon after their Round 2 loss. Since no one claimed him, the 37-year-old defender would be eligible to play in Sunday’s Packers-Buccaneers game. Since Tuesday, Williams has been waived, made a Packers visit, signed with the Packers and now will rise from the practice squad to the active roster via the COVID-19 replacement route.

If Williams plays Sunday, it will be his fifth NFC championship game as a Packer. Among current Packers, only he and kicker Mason Crosby saw action in the frigid 2007 NFC title game against the Giants. Williams playing Sunday would make him the first player ever to do suit up for two different teams in the same playoffs, according to ESPN.com’s Adam Schefter (on Twitter).

Williams’ status may be tied to Kevin King‘s availability. King is battling a back injury that flared up Friday, though Jeremy Fowler of ESPN.com notes the young corner is feeling better after that issue (Twitter link). King fully participated in Green Bay’s Wednesday and Thursday practices but did not work out Friday.

The NFL loosening restrictions on players changing teams amid the pandemic would allow Williams to complete this postseason double dip. The league previously required players who changed teams to go through six days’ worth of coronavirus tests before practicing with their new teams. That timetable would not have allowed Williams to play in the NFC championship game. But the league since made a change to allow players who were already being regularly tested to change teams and suit up without navigating the near-weeklong waiting period.

A Packers UDFA in 2007, Williams began his career with eight Green Bay seasons. After leaving for Cleveland in free agency in 2015, he made his way back to Wisconsin in 2018. Williams spending the 2018 and ’19 seasons with the Packers certainly played a key role in his return. Overall, he has spent four seasons playing in current Packer DC and ex-Browns HC Mike Pettine‘s system since 2015.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Packers Sign Tramon Williams

THURSDAY: The Packers are bringing Williams back for a third stint. They will reacquire the 14th-year vet via practice squad deal. Since no team claimed Williams on waivers after the Ravens cut him, he would be eligible to play for the Packers in Sunday’s NFC championship game.

Green Bay released punter Ryan Winslow from its taxi squad to clear a spot for Williams. This will mark Williams’ second P-squad agreement this season; the Ravens initially stashed him on theirs in November.

WEDNESDAY: Tramon Williams may make yet another return to Green Bay. The veteran cornerback is visiting the Packers on Wednesday, per ESPN.com’s Field Yates (on Twitter).

The Ravens cut Williams earlier this week, paving a way for the enduring defender to sign with another team. Williams spent the first eight seasons of his career in Green Bay, before departing after the 2014 slate, and wound up back in Wisconsin for the 2018 and ’19 campaigns.

Williams worked as a depth player in Baltimore and would do the same in Green Bay, should he be asked to return to add some bonus miles to his age-37 season. But Williams started 16 games for the 2018 Packers, working as a safety, and saw time at multiple spots in seven starts for last season’s Green Bay edition. Williams played in both of the Packers’ 2019 playoff games and may be an intriguing late addition to the 2020 squad’s run.

The Packers have primarily used Kevin King and Chandon Sullivan opposite Jaire Alexander this season, with Josh Jackson also seeing time. None of these players is battling an injury presently, so it will be interesting to see if the Packers bring Williams back for a third stint. He would bring familiarity with Mike Pettine‘s system, having played for the current Packers DC in Cleveland and Green Bay.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Ravens Waive QB Robert Griffin III

The Ravens have officially waived quarterback Robert Griffin III. The team will also cut defensive backs Davontae Harris and Tramon Williams, plus wide receiver De’Anthony Harris

[RELATED: Ravens Cut Ingram]

The Ravens got a jump start on their spring cleaning this week by releasing Griffin & Co, plus running back Mark Ingram. It all amounts to a professional courtesy, since the Ravens were eliminated by the Bills on Saturday.

Griffin first joined the Ravens as a backup for Joe Flacco and stuck around to be Lamar Jackson‘s primary backstop. In three years, RG3 started twice and threw one touchdown against four interceptions. One of those starts came this year, a 19-14 loss to the rival Steelers.

The former No. 2 overall pick tweeted that “the best is yet to come,” an indication that he’ll seek another job in 2021. Griffin, who won the Heisman Trophy in 2011, turns 31 in February.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Ravens Sign CB Tramon Williams

Tramon Williams‘ Ravens visit last week will produce a deal, and the timing of the parties’ initial meeting will allow for the veteran cornerback to be in uniform Sunday night.

The longtime Packers defender signed with the Ravens on Tuesday. Williams visited the team six days ago and began taking COVID-19 tests, according to The Athletic’s Jeff Zrebiec (on Twitter). That will put him on track not only to be in uniform against the Patriots on Sunday but to begin practicing with his new team when the Ravens begin their Pats preparations Wednesday.

This will be Williams’ 14th NFL season. He spent 10 prior campaigns in Green Bay, working as a key Packer defender from 2007-14 and over the past two seasons — after stays in Cleveland and Arizona. Williams, 37, has started 153 career games — including 23 in his second Packers stint — and will reclaim his place as the league’s oldest active cornerback.

Baltimore remains without All-Pro Marlon Humphrey, who tested positive for the coronavirus. This affected the Ravens’ practices last week, with several defenders missing most or all of those workouts. The Ravens are planning ahead this week.

To make room on their 53-man roster, the Ravens placed cornerback Khalil Dorsey on IR.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Ravens To Work Out Tramon Williams

The Ravens are set to work out longtime Packers cornerback Tramon Williams, as Field Yates of ESPN.com tweets. If signed, Williams would help provide depth for a group that has lost star cornerback Marlon Humphrey and others to the COVID-19 list.

[RELATED: Ravens Place Humphrey On COVID-19 List]

Even at the age of 37, Williams believes that he can still contribute to a contender. He was briefly on the fence about playing amidst the first coronavirus wave, but he’s now intent on returning to the field.

After spending nearly a decade with the Packers to start his career, Williams circled back in 2018. He’s appeared in all 32 regular season games over the past two seasons, including a 2019 campaign where he had eight passes defended and a pair of interceptions.

Most notably, Williams was a crucial part of the Packers’ Super Bowl victory in the 2010 season. He had three interceptions during that playoff run and came up with a critical stop late in the championship game to seal the win for Green Bay.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Tramon Williams: “90% Chance” I’ll Play

Tramon Williams is 37 years old and without a team, but he still plans on playing in 2020 (Twitter link via Jason Wilde of ESPN Radio). The veteran cornerback estimates a “90% chance” of playing in 2020, whether it’s with the Packers or another club. 

[RELATED: Packers’ Devin Funchess To Opt Out]

Like many NFL players, Williams has concerns about health issues and the league’s ability to protect players from coronavirus infection. Still, he’s leaning towards playing if he gets the opportunity. During the interview, Williams indicated that he received interest and opportunities earlier in the year. It’s not clear whether he’s on the verge of a deal as camp gets underway, however.

Before the draft, Packers GM Brian Gutekunst said that Williams was still on his radar. The Packers passed on taking a CB in April, so it stands to reason that Williams could still be a fit in Green Bay.

After spending nearly a decade with the Packers to start his career, Williams circled back in 2018. He’s appeared in all 32 regular season games over the past two seasons, including a 2019 campaign where he had eight passes defended and a pair of interceptions.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Packers Notes: Draft, Williams, Funchess

While this year’s virtual draft will naturally lead to some challenges, Packers general manager Brian Gutekunst still expects to be active in trade talks throughout the weekend.

“I don’t think there’s going to be too much of an issue, certainly not from our end,” Gutekunst said (via Curtis Crabtree of ProFootballTalk.com).

“I think we’ll be able to be as aggressive as we need to be. I like to move around. I think it’s a very good draft. I’d like to move around and get to the areas of the draft I think are strong.”

Gutekunst also mentioned that the team would consider moving up in the first round “if we need to.” The Packers highest pick is currently No. 30, which is one of the organization’s 10 selections.

The Packers have been connected to a number of first-round-caliber prospects, including defensive tackle Raekwon Davis. While they’ve been mentioned as a suitor for quarterbacks like Jordan Love, the team isn’t prioritizing the position in the upcoming draft.

Let’s check out some more notes out of Green Bay…

  • Tramon Williams remains a free agent, but it doesn’t sound like the Packers are in any rush to re-sign the veteran cornerback. Gutekunst told reporters that they’ll evaluate Williams’ fit on the roster after the draft. “If that fits once we get through the draft then we’ll certainly make it happen if we can,” Gutekunst said (via ESPN’s Rob Demovsky on Twitter). After spending nearly a decade with the Packers to start his career, Williams returned to Green Bay in 2018. He’s appeared in all 32 regular season games over the past two seasons, including a 2019 campaign where he had eight passes defended and a pair of interceptions.
  • Wide receiver Devin Funchess still hasn’t “completely” passed his physical, Gutekunst told reporters (via Demovsky). “There’s still a portion of it that he’ll have to kind of get through once hopefully this clears up or we’re able find another way to do it,” Gutekunst said. The Packers have already announced the deal, which is a one-year pact worth as much as $6.25MM. After hauling in 63 receptions for 840 yards and eight scores in 2017, the 25-year-old has only collected 54 receptions for 844 yards and nine touchdowns over the past two years (31 games).
  • Gutekunst isn’t particularly worried about any of the technical glitches during the league’s mock draft. “We got a lot of answers,” Gutekunst said (via the team’s website). “That was the big thing, getting through this and finding out the answers how we really want to do this.”

NFC Notes: Ward, Giants, Bucs, Rollins

Jimmie Ward‘s interesting career with the 49ers looks set for another turn. The fifth-year player’s been shuttled to different positions in each of his four years, with four coaching staffs annually shifting him between safety and cornerback. This year, it doesn’t look like Ward will have a surefire path to remain a starter. Having started 24 games for the past three seasons at either corner or safety, Ward now is set to be a super-sub in Robert Saleh‘s secondary. Second-year safety Adrian Colbert usurped Ward, and once Richard Sherman is ready to play, he’ll take Ward’s place at cornerback alongside Ahkello Witherspoon, Eric Branch of the San Francisco Chronicle notes. He may not be in line to start in the slot, either, with K’Waun Williams back.

It’s not going to be easy for (Ward) to start at any of those five (positons),” Kyle Shanahan said, via Branch, of the 2014 first-rounder who’s set to make $8.52MM this season. “Right now, he’s trying to do it at corner. We’ll reassess this at the end of OTAs and see how it is in training camp. … If Jimmie doesn’t earn a starting role, there’s also a good chance he’s the first backup at every single position: strong safety, free safety, nickel (corner), (outside) corner, because he’s capable of being a starter at all of those positions.”

Here’s the latest from some NFC franchises, continuing with the latest on a player who has a better path to a starting lineup.

  • Will Hernandez‘s starting spot will likely come at the expense of John Jerry, per Ryan Dunleavy of NJ.com. The second-round pick is expected to make a strong push to move into the Giants‘ lineup, and with Big Blue signing Patrick Omameh earlier this offseason, Jerry may be the odd man out. The team could be keeping the veteran around as insurance, but it would cost the Giants more to cut him than it would yield in cap savings. Jerry’s the longest-tenured Giants offensive line starter, doing so since 2014. Both he and Omameh graded as top-40 guards last season, in the view of Pro Football Focus.
  • The BuccaneersUDFA contingent houses some players who received hefty guarantees to sign. Arkansas quarterback Austin Allen received $50K guaranteed to sign, in the form of a $15K signing bonus and a $35K base salary guarantee, Greg Auman of the Tampa Bay Times reports. Temple tackle Cole Boozer received $45K to sign ($20K signing bonus, $25K base guarantee) and running back Shaun Wilson (Duke) collected a $10K signing bonus and saw Tampa Bay guarantee $10K of his base salary. Auman adds Western Michigan tight end Donnie Ernsberger received a $15K bonus.
  • Former Packers second-round pick Quinten Rollins is back working with his team on a limited basis during OTAs, Michael Cohen of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel notes. Rollins tore an Achilles’ tendon in October and isn’t a lock for the roster, given both the severity of his injury and the Packers having drafted corners with their first two 2018 picks. Green Bay did deal Damarious Randall to Cleveland, however, opening up one spot. But the team also added former starter Tramon Williams in free agency. Cohen reports some in the Packers’ scouting department believe Rollins should be moved to safety, but it’s unclear whether the coaching staff concurs. Brian Gutekunst has said Rollins will try to work his way back into the cornerback contingent.

Contract Details: Burnett, Bodine, Williams

Let’s take a look at the most recent new contracts around the NFL:

AFC

NFC