The Green Bay Packers have had some fan favorite players over the years with the likes of John Kuhn, Donald Driver, and others, but one of the team’s more recent big personalities has found a new home with the New Orleans Saints.
With NFL free agency officially starting at 4 P.M. ET on Wednesday, March 15, it didn’t take long for former Packers and Detroit Lions running back Jamaal Williams to find a new home. ESPN NFL insider Adam Schefter tweeted just a few hours after the start of free agency that Williams and the Saints had agreed to a three-year deal.
NFL Network’s Ian Rapaport added that it was a three-year deal worth a maximum of $12 million with $8 million in guaranteed money.
A fourth-round pick back in the 2017 NFL Draft, Williams spent four years with the Packers before signing with their NFC North rivals in the Lions, where he played the last two seasons. Although he’s never been the workhorse back, Williams will get another opportunity to operate as the hard-nosed committee back alongside Alvin Kamara in New Orleans.
Latest on Aaron Rodgers
While former Packers playmakers like Williams are signing on with new teams, the NFL world is continuing to monitor Aaron Rodgers as he waits to be traded to the New York Jets.
The Packers and Jets entered into trade discussions a week before the start of free agency. However, a move has yet to be made with both sides at a standstill despite free agency already well underway.
Rodgers opened up about the situation during an appearance on The Pat McAfee Show on Wednesday, March 15. During the interview, the four-time MVP revealed that he intends to play for the Jets in 2023, but is waiting for the two teams to agree to trade compensation before he can officially be moved.
However, with few backups plans available for the Jets, the Packers appear willing to wait to move Rodgers in order to ensure that they’re getting legitimate compensation in a trade. With Rodgers admitting that he wants to play in New York, Packers general manager Brian Gutekunst can try to wait the Jets out well into the offseason.
Packers and Jets fans could be waiting a while for a move, but that won’t stop free agency from rolling along for the rest of the league.
What Will Jamaal Williams Bring to New Orleans?
He may not be the biggest star at the position, but Williams will bring plenty of energy to the Saints, both on and off the field.
The 27-year-old is coming off easily the best season of his career. Filling in for an injured D’Andre Swift for most of 2022, Williams finished last season with an impressive 1,066 yards and a league-leading 17 rushing touchdowns, breaking Barry Sanders’ franchise record for touchdowns in a single season.
Williams doesn’t shy away from contact as a running back, and while he’s not the most efficient playmaker, he’s a great change-of-pace back playing alongside Kamara. Off of the field, his goofy interviews and constant dancing quickly endeared him to fans in both Green Bay and Detroit.
Despite the goofy personality, Williams showed fans during HBO’s Hard Knocks just how much he loves the game of football. Saints fans should be thrilled to be bringing in Williams for that alone.