Detroit Lions head coach Dan Campbell said Thursday there's a "good chance" the second-year receiver will miss the rest of the preseason after suffering a hamstring injury during Wednesday's practice.
Williams was suspended for the first six games of the 2023 season for violating the league's gambling policy.
After suffering an ACL tear in college, the 2022 first-round pick missed most of his rookie campaign. Williams caught one of nine targets for a 41-yard touchdown in six games last season.
Given the time missed, this offseason was pegged as significant for the young wideout's progress. Then the suspension wiped out the first six games. Now an injury likely ends his preseason early.
The Lions planned to give Williams a heavy preseason workload given the six-game ban. The wideout played a whopping 51 snaps (71%) in the preseason opener against the New York Giants. Williams displayed the ability to get open but caught just two of seven targets for 18 yards, including a potential TD drop.
Had the injury not popped up, Williams would likely have seen similar snap figures in the final two weeks of the preseason. Now those reps are likely off the table.
Soft-tissue injuries during camp are rightly met with caution by teams, so it's no surprise the Lions might shut Williams down for the duration. But it's the latest setback for a young player who needs as much time on the field as possible.
Williams will come off suspension ahead of the Lions' Week 7 game against the Baltimore Ravens on Oct. 22.