This time a year ago, Maurice Williams' professional pride was stung when the Jaguars signed Tony Pashos in free agency to take Williams' job. Six years as the Jaguars' starting right tackle immediately came to an end.
Williams defined the term "full circle" on Thursday when he signed a free agency contract with the Jaguars, ostensibly to remain the team's starting right guard, a job he inherited when Chris Naeole sustained a season-ending leg injury at midseason last year.
"At this time last year, I was questioning whether I was going to be a Jaguar. I'm a Jaguar again and I got a little more money to do it," Williams told reporters in a Thursday afternoon press conference.
"It was difficult at first. You're not the starter any more and you've lost your job. Opportunities came at left tackle and right guard. Just give me a chance. That's what happened last year and I enjoyed myself. I think I did good things as far as power in the running game," Williams added.
A second-round pick from Michigan in 2001, Williams accepted a salary cut last season in exchange for a reduction of his contract to one year and looked forward to finding a new team in free agency and a return to right tackle. He said he drew interest from other teams but the Jaguars remained the most interested.
"We've grown up in Jacksonville and Jacksonville is a good team," Williams said.
Naeole was recently waived. Williams said he had been negotiating with the Jaguars on a new contract prior to Naeole's release.
In other news, the Jaguars announced on Thursday that they released wide receiver Charles Sharon.