Running back DeAngelo Williams, who told WBTV in Charlotte this week that he has been released by the Carolina Panthers, told the station he was upset with the team last year after "nobody" from the organization came to his mother's funeral.
Williams said only one player, Greg Hardy, attended the funeral, and that while head coach Ron Rivera and general manager Dave Gettleman reached out to him, owner Jerry Richardson did not say anything until weeks later after Williams wrote about his mother's death for Sports Illustrated's MMQB.
"I was upset with Carolina, because the last five or six years during October, [my mom] was celebrated, but then when she was no longer here — let's move on," he said. "[I was] very disappointed. And, somewhat angry [...] it stung to know that a place of business that you've worked for, you've bled, you've played through injuries, you've done everything you possibly can for this organization to be successful, and then upon your darkest hour, they let you handle it by yourself."
The Panthers said Monday that Williams has not officially been released, however Williams said he learned of the Panthers' intentions last week during a meeting with Rivera and Gettleman.
He told WBTV he is not bitter about being cut and is "at peace" with it.
"I'll be 32 this year. You know, nine years in the game. I kinda knew the writing was on the wall," he said. "I know I still have a few years left in me. I'm just ready for the next chapter of life."
Williams is Carolina's all-time leading rusher with 6,846 rushing yards over his nine years with the team. The Panthers drafted him in 2006 with the No. 27 pick out of Memphis.
- Molly Geary