left the Syracuse football team in November 2009. (David Bergman/SI)
When the Buffalo Bills agreed to send a sixth-round pick to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in exchange for troubled wide receiver Mike Williams, the world was quickly reminded about the past issues Williams had during his one season at Syracuse under current Bills head coach Doug Marrone.
After a year-long suspension and with a second suspension looming, Williams quit the Syracuse football in November 2009.
While that could have led to lingering issues between the two, the Bills coach said that he wants to put the issues behind him in hopes of moving forward and creating a fresh start for Williams in Buffalo.
“With regard to our time at Syracuse, I feel that is in the past for both of us,” Marrone said in a statement on the team’s official website. ” Mike has an opportunity to get a fresh start to his career here in his hometown and regain his form as a productive player in the National Football League. We look forward to getting Mike into the facility and start our work preparing for the 2014 season once the players are free to report on April 22.
“Mike Williams is a competitive, tough wide receiver who has the size and athleticism to add competition to our receiver position group. We feel Mike is a player who has the ability to help our team improve.”
MORE COVERAGE: Buffalo Bills NFL Mock Draft Tracker | SI’s top 64 prospects
Marrone expressed his concern for Williams' well-being at the NFL meetings in Orlando after learning about the incident where Williams was stabbed in the leg by his brother.
"We've been disconnected from when he left to his time in Tampa, but I liked Mike," Marrone said. "I really did. I wish him well. I talked to [Buccaneers general manager] Jason [Licht] just the other day to see if he [Williams] was OK because I care about him."
With the two now together again in Buffalo, they will have a chance to improve their relationship and work together in hopes of turning around the Bills.