The Buffalo Bills gave offensive lineman Daryl Williams a vote of confidence in March 2021, signing him to a three-year contract extension and starting him every game the next season.
Now, months after the Bills released the former starting tackle in a cap-saving move, Williams has apparently ended his football career. The former fourth-round draft pick leaves the game with a resume that includes nine years in the league and a second-team All-Pro nod.
Williams Moves on From Bills, Retires from Football
Bills beat reporter Matt Parrino noted that Williams’ name had been floated as a potential free-agent signing for Buffalo after the team was hit with a spate of injuries to the offensive line. Starting center Mitch Morse has been out with an elbow injury and backup tackle Tommy Doyle suffered a season-ending ACL tear, leaving the team in need of help.
But Williams will apparently not be a candidate to rejoin the Bills. As Parrino noted, a social media profile revealed that he had retired even though he had not issued any public announcement.
“I know we’ve spoken about Daryl Williams as a potential o-line option for the #Bills to look into. It appears the former tackle/guard has called it a career,” Parrino tweeted. “He just created new IG account for a business he’s named ‘Trench Mob Academy’ to train o-linemen. It says he’s retired.”
A Facebook page for Trench Mob Academy describes a mission to “develop and perfect skills of offensive football lineman,” working mostly with student-athletes.
Bills Had Released Williams in March
Though Williams started all 17 regular-season games for the Bills last season, the team released him in March in a move that cleared $6.3 million in cap space. Williams had signed a three-year, $28.2 million extension with the team in March 2021, and at the time he shared plenty of praise for the organization.
“[Brandon] Beane, [Sean] McDermott, the Pegulas, all my teammates, the coaches, from day one they made me feel comfortable,” Williams said. “I just remember the first day I talked to them they said they want me to be myself. The longer I stayed there, which was the whole year, after a few weeks I felt comfortable in my own skin. I’m just glad to be back.”
After initially joining the Bills on a one-year contract, Williams said he was happy to return to the team and had grown close with his teammates.
“I’m excited to be back because those are my guys,” Williams said. “I’ve grown close to those guys. Like I said before, I can be myself with them. People were shuffling around all year trying to get it right, but I feel like we got it right towards the end of the year. That’s going to make us even better this year.
“People don’t understand how hard is it to play offensive line, and to have those five players together for the whole year is very important. I’m excited to get back and get back to work. I know we are going to be better this year.”