Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Tampa Bay Buccaneers looking to extend WR Williams' contract
TAMPA - Tampa Bay Buccaneers wide receiver Mike Williams has outplayed his contract since the team selected him in the fourth-round of the 2010 draft. He's about to be rewarded for it. Though a deal is far from imminent, the Bucs have entered into negotiations aimed at extending Williams' contract, agent Hadley Engelhard told The Tampa Tribune. "We've had some dialogue and we'll continue to have some dialogue when we get to the (NFL) combine next month,'' Engelhard said. "Both sides have acknowledged that Mike has outperformed his contract.'' Williams, who was selected 101st overall out of Syracuse, signed a four-year, $2.33 million contract that included escalator clauses allowing his pay to increase to approximately $1.4 million for the 2013 season.But Williams immediately began playing at a rate well above his pay scale, leading all NFL rookies with 65 receptions for 964 yards and 11 touchdowns during the 2010 season. In 2011, Williams also caught 65 passes, though his yardage and touchdown totals slipped. In 2012, he bounced back, catching 63 balls for 996 yards and a team-leading nine touchdowns. Along with Pro Bowler Vincent Jackson, Williams helped form one of the best big-play receiving duos in the league, with Jackson ranking first at 19.2 yards per catch and Williams eighth at 15.8. "Both sides are thrilled with the way Mike has played,'' Engelhard said. "Three years, 48 starts, the numbers just speak for themselves. At this point it just makes sense for both sides to negotiate a long-term deal.''