One of the cornerstone players of a rebuilding Jets operation is signed through 2019 via fifth-year option, but beyond that, nothing’s certain.
No extension talks have taken place between Leonard Williams and the Jets, Manish Mehta of the New York Daily News reports. The former No. 6 overall pick also acknowledged a coaching change may impact his decision to commit to the team long-term.
“I think it would a little bit, actually,” Williams said, via Mehta, who describes the fourth-year defensive end as being loyal to Todd Bowles. “I feel like it will impact my decision when that comes. But the fact that I don’t know if there’s going to be a coaching change or I don’t know if there’s going to be a (new) contract… I don’t know what’s in the store for the future, so I can’t (predict).”
“… If there’s a coaching change, that’s going to be basically playing for a whole new team. If I’m going to be playing for a new team here anyway, then it would be the same as playing for a new team somewhere else.”
The Jets were previously eyeing a Williams extension in 2019 and may still be. They just haven’t come to the 24-year-old defensive end for re-up talks yet.
The Jets have Williams attached to a $14.2MM cap number next year, and while their $100MM-plus in projected cap room would make a Williams extension easy, the team could also play this out through the franchise tag in 2020. Bowles signed an extension late last year but may well be fired after what’s been a disappointing season.
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