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Running back Karlos Williams handed four-game suspension

Karlos Williams' offseason went from bad to worse Friday.

Williams, the Buffalo Bills' second-year running back, has been handed a four-game suspension for violating the NFL's substance-abuse policy, The Buffalo News has learned.

The Bills issued the following statement Friday afternoon: "As an organization, we are disappointed that Karlos has put himself in this situation. Poor decisions such as this affect not only the individual, but the entire Bills organization. We will continue to work with Karlos through the various player programs we provide to assist him in making better decisions moving forward.”

It's the latest misstep for Williams, who showed up to spring practices out of shape.

"Obviously he's not anywhere close to where he needs to play at a high level," Bills coach Rex Ryan said last month. "So we've got to get some weight off him and he certainly understands that.

"You guys can see him as well as I do. He's clearly overweight."

A fifth-round pick out of Florida State in the 2015 NFL Draft, Williams was listed at 6-foot-1 and 230 pounds on last year's roster. He rushed for 517 yards on just 93 attempts for an average of 5.6 yards per carry, scoring seven touchdowns. Williams confirmed last season that he played at more than 240 pounds.

He blamed his weight gain on the fact he would eat whenever his pregnant fiancée did.

"It definitely is a first but I like to eat and then her being pregnant gave me an excuse to eat, so eating anything and everything," he said last month. "She’d wake up, one or two o’clock, 'I want a snack.' Well I’m not going to sit here and watch you eat because I don’t want you to feel bad.

"But it’s back to football. She’s getting back to working out herself so kind of motivating each other, feed off each other’s energy, and we’re getting ready for camp."

Ryan expressed his disappointment in Williams last month.

"Obviously you wish that he was in much better shape," the coach said. "There's no question about it. In the future, he has to realize that what he did this offseason is far from what you want. He's a young guy. Hopefully, he'll learn from it."

Williams will be able to participate in training camp and preseason games, but won't be eligible to play until Week Five, when the Bills visit the Los Angeles Rams.

Surely, Friday's suspension will not sit well with the coach.

It has not been a good week for running backs with the last name Williams on the Bills' roster. On Thursday, rookie Jonathan Williams was arrested for DWI in Arkansas.

"I'm excited about this team," Ryan said after the Bills' final minicamp practice. "Obviously a lot of things have to happen, and we're a month or so away, but I told our players today to 'win July.' We won the offseason. I would challenge any team. I think we've won the offseason."

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