What is holding up an agreement between the Jets and 1st-Team All-Pro Quinnen Williams?

Jets GM, Joe Douglas
Jets’ general manager Joe Douglas (Left) speaks to the media before the 2023 NFL Draft.
Nick Faria – AMNY

The longer it takes for the New York Jets to come to a contract-extension agreement with Quinnen Williams, the more difficult the situation will get for the two sides. 

That much has been clear as we get closer to the start of OTAs for Gang Green with their First-Team All-Pro defensive tackle Quinnen Williams continuing to show messages of his displeasure with how negotiations have gone to this point. 

So what is the holdup? Williams has shown the ability to be one of the best defensive players in the league as an interior defender. His 12 sacks at the interior position were considered unheard of for the better part of the last half-century of NFL history. General manager Joe Douglas and head coach Robert Saleh have also consistently stated that they want the former third overall pick here for the long term. 

In the end, though, negotiations between a top player and the team that drafted him can get murky for any party. 

Williams has made it clear that he loves being a part of the Jets but wants to be paid what he believes he’s worth. With Aaron Donald making a yearly average of $31 million, and Jeffrey Simmons coming in at $23.5 million, expectations are that the Jets star wants to be a clear-cut second in terms of per-year tackle earnings. Fox Sports later reported that Williams is looking to have a per-year deal worth $25-30 million on his new deal. 

Quinnen Williams to skip voluntary workouts with Jets
Quinnen WilliamsAP Photo/Mike Roemer

That number could also increase after Kansas City Chiefs defensive tackle Chris Jones has openly stated he wants to be the second-highest paid at his position according to the Athletic. If Jones and the Chiefs agreed to an extension shortly, it will only further complicate the issues Williams and the Jets are currently under. 

New York would have to maneuver some cap situations on their own to make a deal work though for their top defensive player. Gang Green could still restructure contracts to Corey Davis, C.J. Mosley, and Jordan Whitehead to clear enough room for a Williams’ extension and title contention over the next few years. 

The longer they wait on getting those restructures done though, the longer it could take to come to a deal with Williams. 

It would behoove Douglas and the Jets to figure this out as soon as possible. The longer a top player like Williams is away from OTAs and is generally unhappy, the longer that unrest could seep into the locker room and wreck what has been a terrific offseason for the franchise. And the more stars in his position get paid what they are worth, the longer Williams will be frustrated and could eventually want out to a place that would pay him what he wants. 

Making the most of Aaron Rodgers in New York means having a defense that can win him football games over the coming year. Quinnen Williams needs to be a part of that equation for the Jets to even think about ending their decade-long playoff drought. 

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