After the Bills made backup wide receiver Mike Williams inactive on Sunday vs. New England, head coach Doug Marrone indicated it was “a tough call.” Marrone also said the fifth-year receiver had dealt with the decision well.
“We talked to him and he handled it like a pro and he’ll be ready to go next week,” Marrone said at the time, according to the club.
Whether the Bills are ready to play him Sunday vs. Minnesota remains to be seen.
Per Mike Rodak of ESPN.com, Williams “did not take a rep with the offense” in Wednesday’s practice.
On Wednesday, Marrone declined to say whether Williams would be active against the Vikings, preferring to take a wait-and-see approach.
“For the decisions of inactives and stuff, we’ll see how the week goes,” Marrone said, according to a transcript of his remarks from the team. “I don’t want to get myself in a bind.”
Since being made a healthy scratch on Sunday, news emerged that Williams’ agent, Hadley Engelhard, wished to explore a trade. Williams, for his part, said he wants to stay in Buffalo. And on Wednesday, Marrone allowed that he was miffed about the agent’s role in potentially seeking a deal, according to the transcript of the head coach’s remarks. However, Marrone did say he believed Williams was happy in Buffalo for the time being.
As long as Williams is a backup who doesn’t have a role on special teams, his spot could be tenuous each week. That was driven home on Sunday. It comes down to this: if the Bills believe he can help the offense, he’ll likely be active. There isn’t exactly a surplus of offensive production in Buffalo. The Bills are 25th in yards and 26th in points entering Week Seven.
Thus, until Williams is back in the WR rotation, this will be a delicate situation for all involved, for if he’s a healthy scratch in this offense, it’s uncomfortable for player and team. As Rodak has reported, Williams’ $5.2 million salary for 2015 is guaranteed.