Bills sign DE Williams _ announcement delayed
ORCHARD PARK, N.Y. (AP) - Star defensive end Mario Williams has signed a six-year contract with the Buffalo Bills, though the news conference to announce the move has been delayed due to technical difficulties.
An hour after the news conference announcing the free agent’s signing was scheduled to start Thursday, team spokesman Scott Berchtold apologized for the delay, saying the team is still working to fix the problems. Though Berchtold didn’t provide details, technicians were working in the media room and conducting microphone checks.
THIS IS A BREAKING NEWS UPDATE. Check back soon for further information. AP’s earlier story is below.
The deal is worth up to $100 million, with $50 million guaranteed, his agent, Ben Dogra said.
Williams was at the team’s facility, and has been in discussions with Buffalo since free agency began Tuesday. Selected first overall in the 2006 draft by Houston, Williams had a franchise-best 53 sacks in six seasons with the Texans.
Listed at 6-foot-6 and 285 pounds, Williams is a two-time Pro Bowl starter, and set a single-season team record with 14 sacks in 2007. Williams was limited to playing just five games last season as a result of a torn chest muscle. He also missed three games in 2010 after having surgery to repair a sports hernia.
The Bills regarded improving their pass rush as their top offseason priority, after managing just 29 sacks last season _ 10 of them coming in one game.
The team spared no expense in its bid to land Williams. General manager Buddy Nix and defensive coordinator Dave Wannstedt flew on a private jet to pick up Williams at his home in North Carolina to bring him back to Buffalo.
Williams spent Tuesday night dining with team management and coaches at a downtown restaurant. After taking a physical and touring the Bills facility on Wednesday morning, Williams was joined by his fiancee, who traveled to Buffalo, and was provided a tour of the region.