Former Auburn WR Duke Williams ready to make most of what could be his last NFL opportunity
Former Auburn WR D’haquille “Duke” Williams is getting another shot at making an NFL roster. This time, he’s determined to make the most of it knowing it could be his last chance.
Williams spoke with Jason Wolf of the Buffalo News for a lengthy profile. He touches on his pre-Auburn days, his dismissal from AU, getting cut by the Los Angeles Rams, his time in the CFL and his new opportunity with the Buffalo Bills.
The former Tiger knows he has to prove he can stay out of trouble.
“I can’t make nobody sign me. I can’t make nobody put me on the field,” Williams said. “I have to earn that, as a man. I have to do my part off the field. I know I can play football, but can I stay out of trouble? I got kicked out of Auburn, so that cloud’s still over my head. It’s going to always be there. I know that. But these last two years I proved to every team in the NFL and every team in the CFL that I’m not the guy that they labeled me at Auburn.
“We all make mistakes, but we learn from them. Nobody’s perfect. Auburn knows that. They know I’m not the bad guy. But I still made a mistake that night that cost me my future, that caused me to get kicked out of school, that caused my team distractions. But at the end of the day, they know what type of guy I am.
“Me punching four people in a bar — that’s not me.”
For Tigers fans interested in Williams’ life after his dismissal from the Plains, the profile is definitely a worthwhile read. Williams says his heart wasn’t in football his first time around in the NFL and looks back on a pivotal moment in his CFL days that completely changed his approach and led to him becoming a “model teammate.” Last season, Williams recorded 1,579 receiving yards and 11 touchdowns on 88 catches for the Edmonton Eskimos.