The same day the Lions drafted Calvin Johnson, they traded the wide receiver they drafted in the top 10 just two years ago -- Mike Williams. They sent Williams and quarterback Josh McCown to Oakland for a fourth-round pick.
Williams said he told the Lions as long ago as August he wanted out of Detroit and asked for a trade in March. He feels he will have a better shot at success with the Raiders than he did with the Lions. Oakland coach Lane Kiffin was his position coach at Southern Cal in 2002-03 when he was a dominant college player.
"I feel good, man," Williams said. "It's about having a fresh start and going into camp with a fair chance of competing. That's what I'm looking forward to."
Williams felt he never fit in with the Lions. He was the third straight wide receiver the Lions took in the top 10, after Charles Rogers (second overall) in '03 and Roy Williams (seventh overall) in '04. When the Lions brought in a new coaching staff last year, they hired an offensive coordinator, Mike Martz, whose system didn't suit him.
"When I came to Detroit, they already had Roy and Charles," Williams said. "How did I fit in? Where did I fit in? Martz went on record saying that I didn't really do what he likes to do."
Williams had several issues with the Lions, most notably his weight. He was fined tens of thousands of dollars for being over the Lions' weight targets for him. They wanted him at 230 pounds as a rookie. They wanted him at 220 last year.
Johnson is listed at 239 pounds, but he runs a 4.35-second 40-yard dash. Martz says the issue is having the speed and quickness to beat cornerbacks, not size in and of itself.
"As soon as they gave me the weight, I told them it wasn't fair," Williams said. "When they stuck me with the weight, anyway, I just felt like that they really didn't have an idea where I was going to be or if I could help. By giving me that weight that was very unreasonable, it would justify why they weren't playing me when people would ask, 'Well, Mike Williams is a top-10 draft pick. Why isn't he playing?' "
The Lions have a different version.
"It was time to move on, but not by our choice," president Matt Millen said. "He never showed up. So this is the best for him, and it's the best for us.
And it's a shame because he has great abilities. If he plays to his abilities, the kid's got tons of skills. I wish him the best. We wish him the best as an organization, but it didn't work out here for him."
--DT Cory Redding: Tendered at $6.775M.
TRANSITION PLAYER: None.
UNRESTRICTED FREE AGENTS
--WR Corey Bradford came back to the Lions last year after being cut earlier in the season. He probably won't come back again.
--RB Arlen Harris came and went last season as a depth player. He knows Mike Martz's offense from St. Louis.
--OG Tyrone Hopson missed the entire season because of injury.
RESTRICTED FREE AGENTS: None.
EXCLUSIVE RIGHTS FREE AGENTS: Not available.
--RB Aveion Cason: UFA; 1 yr, terms unknown.
--WR Mike Furrey: Potential UFA; 3 yrs, terms unknown.
--DE Claude Harriott: ERFA; terms unknown.
--LB Alex Lewis: Potential RFA; 3 yrs, terms unknown.
--RB Will Matthews: ERFA; terms unknown.
--TE Sean McHugh: ERFA; terms unknown.
--NT Langston Moore: ERFA; terms unknown.
--LS Don Muhlbach: RFA; 5 yrs, terms unknown.
--OG Stephen Peterman: ERFA; terms unknown.
--DT Cleveland Pinkney: Not tendered as ERFA; 1 yr, terms unknown.
--OL Blaine Saipaia: Potential RFA; 2 yrs, terms unknown.
--DE Corey Smith: UFA; 1 yr, terms unknown.
--CB Keith Smith: RFA; $850,000/1 yr.
--RB Tatum Bell (trade Broncos).
--CB Tony Beckham: FA; 1 yr, terms unknown.
--CB Ike Charlton: FA; 1 yr, terms unknown.
--RB T.J. Duckett: FA Redskins; $1.5M/1 yr.
--CB Travis Fisher: UFA Rams; $2.25M/1 yr, $1.25M SB.
--OT George Foster (trade Broncos).
--WR Shaun McDonald: UFA Rams; $2.8M/2 yrs, $1.5M guaranteed.
--OG Edwin Mulitalo: FA Ravens; 3 yrs, terms unknown.
--WR Marcus Robinson: FA; 1 yr, terms unknown.
--WR Cliff Russell: Fa; 1 yr, terms unknown.
--DE Dewayne White: UFA Buccaneers; $29M/5 yrs, $13M guaranteed.
--NT Marcus Bell (released).
--CB Dre' Bly (traded Broncos).
--OG Rick DeMulling: UFA Colts; 1 yr, terms unknown.
--CB Jamar Fletcher: UFA Texans; $2.3M/2 yrs, SB unknown.
--S Terrence Holt: UFA Cardinals; $15M/5 yrs, $3.5M RB/$500,000 RB '08.
--DE Tyoka Jackson (released).
--QB Josh McCown (traded Raiders).
--S Jon McGraw: UFA Chiefs; 2 yrs, terms unknown.
--TE Marcus Pollard (released).
--FB Cory Schlesinger: UFA Dolphins; $2M/2 yrs, SB unknown.
--OG Ross Verba (released).
--WR Mike Williams (traded Raiders)