The Seahawks announced today that defensive tackle Jesse Williams will undergo kidney surgery after being diagnosed with Papillary Type 2 cancer.

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The Seahawks announced today that defensive tackle Jesse Williams will undergo kidney surgery after being diagnosed with Papillary Type 2 cancer.

Williams, 24, is entering his third year with the Seahawks after being taken in the fifth round of the 2013 draft out of Alabama. He has yet to play in a game after missing his first two seasons with knee injuries, but was planning on a return to the field this season and competing for a spot on the defensive line.

The team issued the news in a brief statement that did not include a possible timeline.

In that statement, Williams said: “Although disappointing, I am a fighter and will handle this. I am going to focus on my health and fighting this battle with a return to football as my ultimate goal. Thank you for your thoughts and support. Go Hawks!”

In the same statement, general manager John Schneider said: “Jesse is an extraordinarily tough individual who has overcome a great deal in his life and we will support him in any way possible. He is in our thoughts and prayers.”

Williams, dubbed ThaMonstar, is a native of Brisbane, Australia. After beginning his American football career at Arizona Western College he played the 2012 and 2013 seasons at Alabama. Seattle traded fifth round and sixth round picks to Detroit during the draft to move up 28 spots in the fifth round to select Williams.

Cancer.net has some information on Papillary Type 2 cancer. The Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center defines it this way: “Papillary carcinomas can develop as individual or multiple tumors, appearing either in the same kidney or in both kidneys. There are two types of papillary cancers, type 1 and type 2. Type 1 are more common and usually grow slowly. Type 2 papillary tumors represent more than one category of disease but, as a group, are much more aggressive and may follow an unpredictable growth pattern.”

UPDATE: Shortly after the news broke, Williams issued the following Tweet: