On Thursday, the team’s senior vice president of player personnel, Doug Williams, used some controversial remarks about domestic violence when refuting a report that Washington was not unified in the decision. During a radio interview, he characterized what happened with Foster as “small potatoes.”
On Friday afternoon, Williams made an unannounced appearance with the team’s media corps and issued an apology.
“First of all, I want to apologize to the organization, my wife, my mom, my sisters and the six daughters that I have,” Williams told reporters. “So, last night or so been real tough on me from the emotional standpoint because never in my life did I say anything so insensitive as I’ve said. I’m not going to sit here as to make excuses because there is no excuse.”
The apology comes days after the Redskins claimed Foster off waivers from the San Francisco 49ers. The Niners cut ties with Foster following his arrest on first-degree misdemeanor domestic violence charges.
During his radio interview, Williams seemingly tried to downplay what happened.
“Oh yeah, we knew that was going to happen, and like I said, rightfully so with all the stuff that is going on in this country,” Williams said on The Team 980. “We’ve got people who are in high, high, high, high places that have done far worse, and if you look at it realistically, they’re still up there. This is small potatoes [compared to] a lot of things out there. But at the same time it’s a big issue in America today, whether or not it’s in football, whether or not it’s in everyday life, whether or not it’s in politics, it’s out there.”
After the Redskins added Foster to the roster, the league on Tuesday placed the linebacker on the reserve/commissioner exempt list, which prevents Foster from practicing and playing for Washington pending the results of the NFL’s investigation into his arrest.
Williams’ statements on Thursday only served to further ignite the controversy surrounding Foster’s addition to the team leading to Friday’s impromptu news conference.
“If you know me, you will understand,” Williams said. “Growing up, I understand the climate of what’s going on, and for me to make comments like I did, I just want to apologize to anybody out there within earshot, especially the ladies of this area, across the country. And like I said, I’ve got six daughters — there’s no way in the world that I would tolerate anything like that. So, for me to say something like that, I just want to apologize.”
Williams did not take questions from reporters before stepping off the podium.