CINCINNATI, OH - OCTOBER 16: Bobbie Williams #63 of the Cincinnati Bengals celebrates during the NFL game against the Indianapolis Colts at Paul Brown Stadium on October 16, 2011 in Cincinnati, Ohio. The Bengals won 27-17. (Photo by Andy Lyons/Getty Images)
Former Cincinnati Bengals offensive guard Bobbie Williams has agreed in principle to a two-year deal with the Baltimore Ravens, the team announced on Friday. Williams, who spent the last eight seasons with the Cincinnati Bengals, playing and starting 118 games, has been one of Cincinnati's best offensive lineman during his tenure, if not one of the league's better offensive guards.
After entering the final year of a two-year deal in 2011, Williams broke his ankle midway through the season, which he's been rehabilitating since. During the first of a four-day OTA session this week, Williams was reportedly working out with the team's Rehabilitation Director at Paul Brown Stadium. He claimed to be roughly 85 percent recovered.
It was unlikely that the Bengals were going to sign Williams, who turns 36 in September. With his departure, the Bengals lose a good run blocker as well as an emotional leader in the clubhouse. Excluding last season, which ended on Injured Reserve, Pro Football Focus rated Williams as one of the league's top-five offensive guards in the NFL from 2008 through 2010.
If you're feeling a sense of deja vu, then fear not. Williams follows the path of one Willie Anderson, who left the Cincinnati Bengals to join the intra-divisional rivals in Baltimore in 2008.