FORMER Richmond assistant coach Mark Williams is surprised he wasn't offered a contract by the club for the 2017 season.

Williams was one of three support staff let go by the Tigers at the end of the season, ending a four-year tenure as head development coach.

"That was their decision, it was a bit tough," he told SEN radio on Friday morning.

"Based on my role and what I had done, I thought that I had done a pretty good job. And they all said that."

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The 2004 premiership-winning Port Adelaide coach was told his contract would not be renewed during a telephone conversation with the Tigers' football manager while he was interstate for a funeral.

"It was a bit awkward," he said.

"I had a previous meeting where it was indicated I might have to take a pay cut and maybe a change of role. But it didn't eventuate that way."

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Williams says he has spoken to several AFL clubs, but was struggling to lock in a position for next season with a cap on football department spending.