With wide receiver Cooper Kupp likely sidelined this week by a knee sprain, Los Angeles has signed free agent wide receiver Nick Williams. As a corresponding roster move, the club has cut kicker Cairo Santos.
Head coach Sean McVay hinted at the signing on Monday, noting that the club would likely bring in someone he had familiarity with. Originally an undrafted free agent out of UConn, Williams signed with Washington back in 2013 and appeared in five games. That year, McVay was Washington's tight ends coach.
While Washington waived Williams at the start of the 2014 season, the wide receiver has since spent the majority of his time in the NFL with members of that 2013 Washington coaching staff. Now 49ers head coach Kyle Shanahan was Washington's offensive coordinator in 2013 and reunited with Williams in Atlanta in 2015. Williams spent the next three years with Atlanta, appearing in 17 games and making 25 receptions for 248 yards and a pair of touchdowns.
Williams was most recently with Tennessee this season — under former L.A. offensive coordinator Matt LaFleur, who was also a part of the 2013 Washington staff as its quarterbacks coach. Williams appeared in two games this season for the Titans, returning for punts for an average of 11.8 yards per return.
Cutting Santos is an indication that All-Pro kicker Greg Zuerlein is ready to return from his groin injury. McVay noted on Monday that Zuerlein had a chance to return this week, but that chance now appears to be reality.
Los Angeles also made a pair of practice squad transactions, cutting defensive back Linden Stephens, to add linebacker Travin Howard. Howard was a Rams 2018 seventh-round draft pick, but was waived in the roster reduction to 53 players at the beginning of the regular season.