Speaking for the first time since he was suspended six games for violating the NFL’s gambling policies, Jameson Williams said he was taken aback by the punishment.
The Detroit Lions wide receiver was one of four players to be suspended by the league — three others will miss at least the entire 2023 season.
Taken with the 12th pick in the 2022 NFL Draft, Williams admitted he wasn’t well-tuned into the league’s rules.
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Detroit Lions wide receiver Jameson Williams celebrates after catching a touchdown against the Minnesota Vikings during the first half of their NFL game in Detroit on Dec. 11, 2022. (AP Photo/Duane Burleson)
“It hit me out the blue, and it hit a couple players on my team and around the league out the blue. I wasn’t aware of this situation,” Williams admitted to reporters after Thursday’s OTA practice.
However, he’s ready to move on.
“But as it happened, I took it on the chin. I was ready to move forward. As things went on, I got the consequences. That’s been my whole plan: moving forward from things and just looking at the better days,” he said.
Williams admitted that he didn’t bother to spend much time fighting the case.
“The suspension pretty much is what it is. I broke a policy… I just left it alone. They gave me six games, and we left it at that. I’m just looking forward to coming back Week 7, getting back with my team out there and playing a game,” he said.
Detroit Lions’ Jameson Williams catches a pass during the first half of the game against the Minnesota Vikings in Detroit on Dec. 11, 2022. (AP Photo/Duane Burleson)
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Williams said he will now aim to “just make the right decisions.”
The Alabama product tore his ACL in the 2022 College Football Playoff National Championship against Georgia, which slightly hurt his draft stock. The injury forced him to miss the first 11 games of the season, but when he got back on the field, he showed his big-play ability — his first NFL reception was a 41-yard touchdown.
Williams only got nine targets on the season, and that touchdown was his only reception; he also had a 40-yard rush.
When Williams returns this upcoming season, he’ll line up opposite Amon-Ra St. Brown, who broke out for 106 catches and 1,161 yards in his sophomore season.
Jameson Williams of the Detroit Lions runs with the ball against the Minnesota Vikings at Ford Field in Detroit on Dec. 11, 2022. (Gregory Shamus/Getty Images)
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The Lions went 9-8 last season and were vying for a playoff spot up until the Seattle Seahawks knocked them out in Week 18.