The Cincinnati Bengals won’t be bringing DeShawn Williams back for the 2018 offseason.
Despite spending the entire 2017 season on the team’s practice squad, Cincinnati did not sign Williams to a futures contract. It’s unclear if that was the Bengals’ or Williams’ decision, but regardless, he’s found his next NFL home.
On Wednesday, the Denver Broncos signed Williams to a futures contract. He’ll be reunited with several former Bengals, including Vance Joseph, J.J. Dielman, and Domata Peko.
Williams spent his entire Bengals stint fighting among a crowded group of defensive linemen to make the 53-man roster. Originally an undrafted free agent out of Clemson in 2015, Williams spent his rookie year on the practice squad, though most of his second season in the league on the Bengals’ 53-man roster.
He actually had an opportunity to join the New Orleans Saints in his rookie year, but declined in order to stay with the Bengals on their practice squad in 2015. He then made the roster in 2016, though he was often inactive on gamedays.
In 4 games played in 2016, Williams had one tackle and 0.5 sacks.
This past season, Williams was waived during final roster cuts, as he was unable to overcome Pat Sims, Andrew Billings, Ryan Glasgow and Geno Atkins for a roster spot at defensive tackle. Then Williams was never called up to the 53-man roster, partly because undrafted free agent Josh Tupou did get several call-ups to the roster, though he appeared in just one game.
Now, the Bengals will go into the offseason with only Atkins, Billings, Tupou and Glasgow under contract, as Sims is a free agent.