Sports

Despite getting benched, Panthers all-time leading rusher DeAngelo Williams wants to return

  • Carolina Panthers' DeAngelo Williams answers reporters' questions as he makes his way out of Bank of America Stadium for the final time this season in Charlotte, N.C., Monday, Dec. 31, 2012.  (AP Photo/Bob Leverone)

    Carolina Panthers' DeAngelo Williams answers reporters' questions as he makes his way out of Bank of America Stadium for the final time this season in Charlotte, N.C., Monday, Dec. 31, 2012. (AP Photo/Bob Leverone)  (The Associated Press)

  • Carolina Panthers' DeAngelo Williams (34) breaks away for a 65-heard run during the first half of an NFL football game against the New Orleans Saints Sunday, Dec. 30, 2012, in New Orleans. (AP Photo/Dave Martin)

    Carolina Panthers' DeAngelo Williams (34) breaks away for a 65-heard run during the first half of an NFL football game against the New Orleans Saints Sunday, Dec. 30, 2012, in New Orleans. (AP Photo/Dave Martin)  (The Associated Press)

  • New Orleans Saints' Patrick Robinson tries to stop Carolina Panthers' DeAngelo Williams (34) on a run  during the first half of an NFL football game Sunday, Dec. 30, 2012, in New Orleans. (AP Photo/Bill Haber)

    New Orleans Saints' Patrick Robinson tries to stop Carolina Panthers' DeAngelo Williams (34) on a run during the first half of an NFL football game Sunday, Dec. 30, 2012, in New Orleans. (AP Photo/Bill Haber)  (The Associated Press)

Carolina Panthers all-time leading rusher DeAngelo Williams says he wants to remain with the team despite getting benched earlier this season.

But the seven-year veteran is the first to admit that's not his decision.

Williams says "the ball is not really in my court."

Williams has three years remaining on a five-year contract worth $43 million that included a $16 million signing bonus.

Williams closed the season by setting a franchise record with a career-best 210 yards rushing and two touchdowns in Carolina's 44-38 win over the New Orleans Saints.

Williams started the final five games with Jonathan Stewart out with a high ankle sprain.

"I signed a five-year contract, so that in itself lets you know I want to be back," Williams said as the left the stadium.

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