Late last month, Detroit Lions wide receiver Jameson Williams was , along with four other players, for violating the NFL's gambling policy. Because Williams did not gamble on NFL games, he did not receive an indefinite suspension of at least a year. Instead, he received a six-game suspension for placing an online bet while in a team facility.
Williams released a statement through his agency at the time of the announcement, but this week addressed the allegations and suspension while at Lions minicamp.
"It hit me out the blue, and it hit a couple players on my team and around the league out the blue," Williams said Thursday, according to USA Today. "I wasn't aware of this situation. 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."
How Williams could have been unaware of the league's gambling policy is unclear being that players are educated on these sorts of rules during the offseason, but but that is nonetheless his stance. In any even, Williams is taking the suspension in stride.
"The suspension pretty much is what it is. I broke a policy, he said. "I'm just happy to be out here and get this time with my guys I didn't get a chance to do last year," Williams said.
Last year, Williams did not participate in the offseason program because he was still rehabbing from a torn ACL. He ended up not making his NFL debut until Week 12, and he ultimately played just 78 snaps, catching one of nine targets for 41 yards and a touchdown while also gaining 40 yards on his lone rushing attempt of the season. Now, Williams will again have to miss a significant portion of the year, although he will at least be in good health while sidelined.
"They gave me six games and we left it at that," Williams said. "I'm just looking forward to coming back Week 7, getting back with my team out there and playing a game."