Kansas City Chiefs running back Damien Williams said in an interview that he opted out of the 2020 NFL season because his mother was diagnosed with Stage 4 cancer.
“With everything that’s going on, she was the only one there for me,” he told SiriusXM NFL Radio. “I never had the opportunity to have my dad there. My mom is my rock, my everything, so during a hard time like this, I think I should be next to her every step.”
Williams, 28, said it was the right decision for his family.
“It was hard, I sat down and talked to everybody in my circle, my family and everybody close to me,” Williams said. “My mom was just like, whatever’s your decision, I’m behind you. It was hard. Football is my life and coming off a championship and wanting a repeat — and I know they’re going to handle that — but at the end of the day, it was something personal I had to handle.”
Williams scored the final two touchdowns in the Chiefs’ 31-20 victory over the San Francisco 49ers in Super Bowl LIV on Feb. 2. He put Kansas City ahead in the fourth quarter with a 5-yard touchdown reception before padding the lead with a 38-yard score.
Williams had 711 yards from scrimmage (498 rushing, 213 receiving) and seven touchdowns (five rushing, two receiving) in the regular season last year.