Be it the lockout, a lack of commitment, quarterback Josh Freeman's own regression or something else, Tampa Bay Buccaneers wide receiver Mike Williams was a massive disappointment last season. After posting 964 yards and 11 touchdowns as a rookie, he fell off to 771 yards and three touchdowns in 2011.
Williams has come into camp in better shape this year. He is learning anything and everything he can from Vincent Jackson. The Bucs' wide receiver coach said Williams' commitment level is much higher, and Williams hopes that leads to a higher level of play.
"I want to be at a higher level," Williams told the Tampa Bay Times. "I feel like I'm putting the work in now, watching extra film, knowing what the coverage is, working with Vincent on extra things. I don't want to get to a level I've already been at. I want to exceed that level."
Even with renewed focus and better play out of Freeman, Williams will be hard hard-pressed to improve on his rookie numbers. I have no doubt that he will top last year, but the 2012 Bucs look to be preparing a run-first, run-second offense, and I don't think it will be able to sustain consistent fantasy value in two wide receivers. Jackson should fall somewhere in the WR2 range. But Williams is probably a bye-week replacement at best. He's No. 40 on FFToolbox's WR rankings, and there are some guys behind him -- Greg Little, Vincent Brown, Nate Washington -- whom I would definitely rather own.