The Indianapolis Colts announced today that they have claimed guard Donovan Williams off of waivers from the Chicago Bears and waived punter Michael Palardy.
Williams (6-3, 315 pounds) originally signed with the Bears as an undrafted free agent earlier this offseason, and though he spent the offseason and training camp with the Bears, he was waived two days ago. Interestingly, he was one of the offensive linemen waived to make room for a couple of other signings, which included former Colts center Khaled Holmes. In the Bears’ preseason opener, Williams played 42 snaps (81% of the offensive snaps). In college, Williams began at Blinn Junior College (in Texas) and was named a first-team All-Southwest Junior College Football Conference selection in 2013 before transferring to Louisiana-Lafayette to play the 2014 and 2015 seasons. During his time at the school, he started all 25 games.
The signing of Williams is particularly noteworthy in light of what Colts head coach Chuck Pagano said earlier today, as he updated the progress of guard Hugh Thornton by revealing that he is now week-to-week - meaning he’ll miss time. Williams isn’t technically taking Thornton’s spot, but it’s quite possible that the Colts grabbed Williams off of waivers with that situation in the back of their minds.
To make room for Williams, the Colts waived punter Michael Palardy, who was brought in during training camp as Pat McAfee dealt with a tweaked knee. Palardy handled the kickoff duties on Saturday night and took over the punting duties in the second half, but with McAfee healthy there was no longer any need for another punter.