Cincinnati Bengals Sign Shawn Williams; Will Remain a Bengal Until the End of the 2020 Season
When the Cincinnati Bengals let Reggie Nelson walk in free agency, it became apparent they had a backup plan. Shawn Williams, safety, has become that backup plan. The team announced the signing of the safety on Tuesday to keep him a Bengal through the 2020 season.
According to a source provided by NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport, the deal is worth $19.5 million — with $4 million guaranteed. The former third round pick in 2013 was entering the final year of his rookie year.
Reggie Nelson is now with the Oakland Raiders and filling his shoes will be no easy task. Nelson was tied for the league lead in interceptions with eight. Williams had a breakout year in 2015, appearing in all 16 games and registering 32 tackles and 2 interceptions in his first four starts.
He has contributed very nicely on special teams early in his career, which earned him time here and there on defense. However, now the show is his. Coach Marvin Lewis had this to say of the extension:
“Shawn is one of our bright, young players, and we’re excited to have him as part of the team moving forward. He has been a physical player, and he has increased his value as a playmaker on the ball. This is just one more part of our plan, which is to draft the right players, develop them and retain them.”
After also signing safety George Iloka to an extension, Williams will now start across from him on the back end. At just 25 years old, if Williams can pick up where he left off last season, the Bengals will boast a very talented safety duo for years to come.
The Bengals are probably enjoying a nice weight off their shoulders after this extension.
(Cincinnati Bengals Sign Shawn Williams)