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Former Bengals S Shawn Williams agrees to sign with Cardinals

Shawn Williams #36 and members of the Cincinnati Bengals defense celebrate a sack during the second half against the New York Jets at Paul Brown Stadium on December 1, 2019 in Cincinnati, Ohio. (Photo by Michael Hickey/Getty Images)

Former Cincinnati Bengals safety Shawn Williams has agreed to join the Arizona Cardinals on a one-year deal, the team announced Monday.

Williams, 29, played under current Arizona defensive coordinator Vance Joseph in 2014-15, when Joseph led defensive backs for Cincinnati.

A 2013 third-round pick by the Bengals, Williams was an everyday starter in 2019 and posted 114 tackles with an interception and three passes defensed.

He was relegated to a backup safety and special teams role last year after the Bengals got younger by signing Vonn Bell.

Williams posted 16 tackles and a pass defensed over 13 games in 2020.

His addition gives the Cardinals a plug-and-play strong safety with size at 6-foot and 212 pounds. He joins All-Pro Budda Baker in the defensive backfield and could potentially vie for playing time.

Arizona’s lack of depth hit the team last year when now-third-year pro Jalen Thompson appeared in only five games due to a nagging ankle injury suffered in Week 1.

Third-year pro Deionte Thompson and backup Charles Washington are also back, while veteran backup Chris Banjo remains a free agent.


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