"We sat down and (Panthers general manager Dave Gettleman) told me 'The fact of the matter is we're going to have to release you,' " Williams told Molly Grantham. "I said you know, 'Why?' and he said, 'because we don't run the ball enough. Just like you said back before the season started, we don't run the ball enough to keep you and both (Jonathan Stewart), so we're going to release you.' "
"I don't feel bitter at all. (Stewart) had the hot hand at the end of the season. He's a great running back, obviously, uh, I don't feel bitter at all. It's a business," Williams said. "And that business comes back and reminds us year after year -- whether it be Steve Smith, whether it be Jordan Gross, whether it be myself -- it's going to happen to every guy in that locker room, so it doesn't bother me at all."
Williams' bulky contract, written by the previous administration, has always been a burden for the franchise. The Panthers won't receive much cap space by releasing Williams, but Gettleman hasn't been shy about cutting veteran players with large contracts to create room for younger players. The running back could be designated a post-June 1 cut to save the Panthers $2.3 million in cap space this season.
In a related move, offensive lineman Byron Bellannounced on his Instagram page that his tenure with the Panthers has come to an end. The 26-year-old guard, who started 56 games in Carolina over four years, wrote: "It's been real in Carolina now time to see where the Lord takes me next.! Can't be mad 4 years would love more but hey it is what it is ... "