Bengals' Williams gets four-game ban; roster trimmed
Cincinnati, OH – Cincinnati Bengals offensive lineman Bobbie Williams was suspended four games by the NFL for violation of the league's policy on performance enhancing substances, the team announced Saturday while also trimming its roster down to the required 53 players.
In addition, starting outside linebacker Keith Rivers was placed on the reserve/non-football injury list and cornerback Adam Jones will begin the season on the reserve/physically unable to perform list. The Bengals also placed tight end Bo Scaife and linebacker Roddrick Muckelroy on season-ending injured reserve.
Williams has started Cincinnati's last 68 games at right guard, a streak dating back to 2006, as well as 109 out of a possible 112 contests since joining the organization in 2004. The 34-year-old will be eligible to return for the Bengals' game at Jacksonville on Oct. 9.
With the Bengals releasing veteran Max Jean-Gilles on Saturday, rookie Clint Boling is the likely candidate to fill Williams' spot for the first four games. The University of Georgia product was Cincinnati's fourth-round choice in this past April's draft.
Rivers, who underwent wrist surgery during the offseason, and Jones, still recovering from a July procedure to repair a herniated disc in his neck, will both be forced to miss the season's first six games.
Scaife, signed as a free agent in August after catching 251 passes over six seasons with Tennessee, suffered a shoulder injury in the Bengals' third preseason game, while Muckelroy ruptured his Achilles tendon early in training camp.
In addition to Jean-Gilles, the Bengals released defensive end Victor Adeyanju and cornerback Jonathan Wade, while cornerbacks Brandon Ghee, Rico Murray and David Pender, quarterback Dan LeFevour, tight end John Nalbone, defensive tackles Jason Shirley and Cornell Banks, fullbacks Fui Vakapuna and James Develin, defensive end James Ruffin and wide receiver Calvin Russell were all waived.
Ghee was a third-round pick in the 2010 draft who played in just six games as a rookie before landing on injured reserve with a groin problem.
Cincinnati also waived running back Jay Finley and cornerback Korey Lindsey, two seventh-round choices in the most recent draft, as well as the following rookie free agents: linebacker DeQuin Evans, running back John Griffin, wide receiver Andrew Hawkins, offensive tackle Matthew O'Donnell, guard Chris Riley and kicker Thomas Weber.