Trent Williams

East Notes: Williams, Mills, Flowers

Trent Williams has been one of the most-discussed players in the NFL for about a year now, and it presently does not sound like the Redskins are close to trading their disgruntled left tackle. One of the more overlooked talking points, however, is what happens if a trade is not completed?

We recently heard that the team does not plan to release Williams, which means he would remain under contract with the Redskins through 2020. And holding out wouldn’t earn him any leverage with the Redskins or with a team interested in trading for him, so as Albert Breer of SI.com writes, Williams would have no choice but to play for Washington next season. He clearly does not want that to happen, but at this point, his clearest path to a lucrative new deal may be to stick it out for one more season with the ‘Skins and prove he is still a top-tier LT.

Let’s round up a few more items from the league’s east divisions:

  • CB Kendall Fuller is back with the Redskins on a four-year deal, and he tells John Keim of ESPN.com that a number of factors brought him back to D.C. The Baltimore native played his collegiate ball at Virginia Tech and was drafted by the Redskins in 2016, so Washington is home for him. He also cited new head coach Ron Rivera and Rivera’s reputation for developing CBs as a draw, along with the defensive staff as a whole. Fuller indicated that he does not know if he will play primarily in the slot or outside the numbers (Twitter links).
  • The Eagles brought back Jalen Mills on a one-year, $4MM pact, and the club plans on transitioning him from cornerback to safety in the wake of Malcolm Jenkins‘ departure. Mills says that Philadelphia was the only team that wanted to move him to safety (Twitter link via Eliot Shorr-Parks of 94 WIP), but obviously that switch was agreeable to the 2016 seventh-rounder. It’s fair to wonder, however, exactly how much interest Mills was generating as a CB on the open market.
  • Ereck Flowers couldn’t hack it as an offensive tackle in the NFL, but he has reinvented himself as a guard and parlayed a strong showing at LG with Washington in 2019 into a surprising three-year, $30MM contract with the Dolphins last month. This will not come as much of a surprise, but Armando Salguero of the Miami Herald says Miami intends to have Flowers line up at guard, though his experience at tackle made him attractive to head coach Brian Flores, who clearly targeted FAs with positional versatility.
  • The Bills opted against giving WR/KR Isaiah McKenzie an RFA tender, but they did re-sign him to a one-year pact just the same. McKenzie told Jay Skurski of the Buffalo News that he did have other free agent offers, but despite the fact that he is unlikely to see more playing time with the Bills in 2020 than he did in 2019, his preference was to return to Buffalo (Twitter link).

Trent Williams Not Asking For $20MM/Year?

A quality back-and-forth battle between the Redskins and Trent Williams‘ camp has formed over the acclaimed left tackle’s asking price for what would be his third NFL contract. Team Williams insists it is not as high as what has been reported.

While Williams is believed to want a new contract post-trade, Williams’ agent, Vince Taylor, said — during an appearance on 106.7 The Fan — reports of his client wanting a $20MM-per-year deal are “totally false.”

Multiple reports this month linked Williams to seeking a tackle-record contract; SI.com’s Albert Breer reiterated this as an issue for teams during a Wednesday appearance on 106.7. Williams’ contract demands are believed to be a bigger impediment toward a deal than the Redskins’ asking price of a second-round pick.

However, Taylor said multiple teams called Washington’s asking price “outrageous.” He hopes the Redskins will release Williams, but a report earlier Thursday indicated that will not happen. One year and $12.5MM remains on the soon-to-be 32-year-old left tackle’s contract. Taylor added that a $16MM offer would not be out of step. With Williams having not played since 2018 and having run into injury trouble on a few fronts over the past few years, that price will probably be too high as well.

If we could get to a point where we could talk about those numbers, that would not be a holdup for us,” Taylor said. “The contract has never been the holdup. The Redskins prior to the Combine put Trent on the trade market. They had him on [the trade block] maybe 10 days, and even through the Combine, which is the biggest business platform for teams looking to wheel and deal. Upon leaving the Combine, the Redskins had not gotten one offer that they could bring to Trent and I so that I could negotiate our side.”

The Browns, Jets and Vikings have been mentioned as interested parties, but it does not look like a deal is close at this point.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Latest On Trent Williams Market

Thursday marks three weeks since the new Redskins regime gave Trent Williams permission to seek a trade, but he remains on Washington’s roster. The Redskins’ search continues, however.

Some teams around the league appear to believe the Redskins will end up cutting their longtime left tackle, but John Keim of ESPN.com notes the team will not do that. Washington remains intent on prying a second-round pick from a team in exchange for its disgruntled blocker. Williams’ contract demands have likely interfered.

Mentioned from the jump as a Williams suitor, the Jets remain uninterested in surrendering their second-round pick (No. 48 overall), and Manish Mehta of the New York Daily News notes Williams’ hopes for a raise have hindered Jets-Redskins trade talks as much as compensation has. Just as contract demands played a role in lessening the compensation the Steelers received for Antonio Brown and, apparently, what the Texans got for DeAndre Hopkins, Williams’ aims have impacted the Redskins’ trade talks.

He may want a deal in the $20MM-per-year ballpark, Mehta adds. No offensive lineman currently earns that, though Laremy Tunsil‘s Texans extension may make him the first. Williams is set to earn $12.5MM in base salary under his current contract, which expires after the 2020 season. Although Williams is a seven-time Pro Bowler, he will be 32 next season and has experienced steady health issues over the past few years.

A new suitor may also be in the mix. The Vikings have expressed Williams interest, Keim adds. Williams blocked for Kirk Cousins for the better part of his three-plus-season run as Washington’s starter, and the Redskins have pegged the Vikings as a team in a win-now window and, thus, one that would be a logical Williams destination, per Keim. Minnesota still has Riley Reiff penciled in at left tackle, though he has been mentioned as a cut candidate.

The Browns continue to show interest, but Keim cautions that the Andrew Berry regime does not look to be as interested as the John Dorsey-led front office was. Cleveland offered Washington a second-rounder for Williams last year, but then-Redskins president Bruce Allen turned that down.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

AFC North Notes: Browns, Ravens, Steelers

The Browns have long been mentioned as the primary suitor for Redskins left tackle Trent Williams, and while no trade is on the immediate horizon, Williams does remain an option for Cleveland, as Mary Kay Cabot of Cleveland.com. At the moment, Washington is asking for too much in trade compensation, while Williams is demanding too expensive an extension. If either of those prices drops, the Browns could make a move for a (much-needed) new blindside protector.

Here’s more from the AFC North:

  • While the Browns are still considering Williams, Vikings safety Anthony Harris –= whom Cleveland has reportedly considered in trade — is no longer an option for the Browns, per Cabot. Minnesota apparently wants at least a third-round pick in order to part with Harris, while the 28-year-old defensive back would want a new deal to supersede his franchise tag. Instead of pursuing Harris, the Browns signed free agent safeties Karl Joseph and Andrew Sendejo.
  • Franchise-tagged edge rusher Matthew Judon is not close to reaching a new deal with the Ravens, per Jeff Zrebiec of The Athletic. Judon will earn $15.828MM in 2020 if he sticks on the franchise tender, but he was reportedly asking for $20MM annually earlier this year, per Zrebiec, who adds that asking price may have since come down. The 28-year-old Judon played 80.8% of Baltimore’s snaps last season and posted a career-high 8.5 sacks.
  • Steelers defensive lineman Cameron Heyward has been eyeing an extension since at least January, and according to Gerry Dulac of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, the 30-year-old should receive a new deal “soon.” Heyward, is set to earn $9.5MM and count for ~13.25MM on the Steelers’ salary cap in 2020. An extension would give Heyward more immediate cash but likely lower his cap charge for next season.

Latest On Jets, Trent Williams

This hasn’t been a banner week for the Jets. After missing out on many of their top targets, many are wondering whether they’ll go for broke in order to land Redskins offensive tackle Trent Williams. For now, they’re holding their ground. 

The Redskins still want a second-round pick and the Jets are still unwilling to cough one up, Connor J. Hughes of The Athletic (Twitter link) hears. He adds that there’s no real sense of urgency on the Redskins’ side, either. From their perspective, they might be able to get the best haul possible after the draft in April, when there will be at least a few teams who walk away without any of their targeted protectors. The Redskins’ logic is (gulp) fairly sound on this one, though a current-year draft pick would hold more value for them than a 2021 choice.

The Jets wanted to sign guard Graham Glasgow – who would have been a big help on the interior – but he went with the Broncos instead. Their whiffs have not been limited to the offensive line, either. They’ve also lost out on cornerbacks James Bradberry and Byron Jones, plus outside linebacker Kyle Van Noy.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

NFC East Notes: Cooper, Williams, Bryant, Jenkins

In good news for Cowboys fans and management, Charles Robinson of Yahoo Sports speculates that there may not be as robust a free-agent market for wide receiver Amari Cooper as expected. Cooper would be the biggest name free-agent receiver to hit the open market without a franchise tag in some time, but Robinson notes that the incredible depth of this year’s NFL Draft class at wide receiver might make teams more skittish about resetting the market to sign Cooper. Granted, Robinson also adds, “it only takes one suitor.”

Here are some more notes from around the NFC East:

  • Washington’s negotiations with star left tackle Trent Williams have been well documented since last offseason. The ultimate fallout led Williams to sit out all of last season. Albert Breer of Sports Illustrated reports that negotiations disintegrated when Williams asked for quarterback money. Of course, it’s hard to know what that specifically means. Some lower-tier quarterbacks (like Mike Glennon and Case Keenum) have received deals with average values only slightly above the highest-paid tackles around the league.
  • Cowboys wide receiver Ventell Bryant was arrested on a DUI charge in Tampa, Florida on Wednesday, per Greg Auman of The Athletic. In Bryant’s arrest report, the arresting officer notes that Bryant admitted to having a number of drinks before getting behind the wheel and tested at a blood-alcohol level of .102 and .099 on a breathalyzer (well above the legal limit of .08). Bryant made Dallas as an undrafted free agent out of Temple and emerged as a key contributor on special teams in his rookie season.
  • The Eagles face a difficult decision surrounding the contract of veteran safety Malcolm Jenkins, according to ESPN staff writer Tim McManus. Philadelphia must decide whether to enact a club option in Jenkins’ contract before the start of the new league year on March 18th for $7.6MM. However, Jenkins has made clear that he will not play under those terms. He had wanted a new contract prior to last season but was willing to play under his contract in 2020. While Jenkins has remained an elite defensive back, the Eagles have been tentative to give the 32-year old a new contract that could pay him into his mid-30s.

Latest On Redskins OL Trent Williams

The Redskins’ asking price for offensive lineman Trent Williams is “starting” at a second-rounder, reports ESPN’s Josina Anderson (via Twitter).

However, the front office’s demands shouldn’t necessarily be blamed for a lack of a trade; rather, as Anderson points out, “a trade has been slowed” by Williams’ contractual demands. NFL.com’s Ian Rapoport echoes those sentiments (Twitter link), noting that the “asking price on a new contract is more of an issue now than Washington’s ask on trade compensation.”

Of course, that doesn’t mean a team will simply hand over a second-round pick. Rapoport notes that teams still aren’t willing to meet the Redskins’ asking price. However, the reporter believes a potential suitor would be more flexible if the offensive lineman were to agree to a reasonable new deal.

We learned earlier this month that the organization was giving their perennial Pro Bowl left tackle permission to seek a trade. At the same time, Williams is seeking a new contract, and he wants to be the NFL’s highest-paid tackle. Williams is set to make $12.5MM in the final year of his current deal. The Browns and Jets have been mentioned as suitors for the veteran lineman.

The seven-time Pro Bowler missed 13 games from 2016-18 and became embroiled with previous Washington president Bruce Allen because of a health scare in 2019. The 31-year-old ended up sitting out the entire 2019 season.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

AFC North Notes: Williams, Ravens, Steelers

The Browns are once again in on a Trent Williams pursuit, but they were persistent in their efforts to acquire the Pro Bowl tackle last year. Previous GM John Dorsey called the Redskins every week about their disgruntled left tackle, according to Albert Breer of SI.com. However, the then-Bruce Allen-led front office gave Dorsey a flat no each time, per Breer. Even Baker Mayfield, like Williams an Oklahoma alum, communicated with Williams about a trade, Breer adds. Dorsey was believed to have offered a second-round pick to Washington for Williams, who ended up skipping all of last season, but the Redskins were holding out for a first. Daniel Snyder fired Allen at season’s end. Now, the Ron Rivera-run Washington front office appears willing to accept compensation less than a first-rounder for Williams. The Browns will not bring back Greg Robinson, and right tackle Chris Hubbard may be a cap-casualty candidate.

Here is the latest from the AFC North:

  • Matt Skura‘s season ended after 11 games, with the Ravens‘ top center going down with ACL, MCL and PCL tears on a Monday night in Los Angeles. Skura also dislocated a kneecap. It will understandably be a while before the fourth-year offensive lineman resurfaces, but Skura said during an appearance on Sirius XM Radio (via Alex Marvez, on Twitter) he expects to resume running in a few weeks and expressed optimism about being ready for training camp. One season remains on Skura’s rookie contract, so this rehab effort will certainly be key toward Skura securing his payday.
  • Kelechi Osemele left Baltimore when his rookie contract expired, signing a then-guard-record deal with the Raiders in free agency. Osemele played four seasons on that five-year contract but saw an injury (and subsequent grievance) end his Jets run early last year. With Osemele a free agent, Mike Garafolo notes he could be a name to watch as a replacement for the retiring Marshal Yanda (video link). Osemele, 30, underwent shoulder surgery last year and has battled injuries in recent seasons, but Garafolo adds the former All-Pro guard wants to continue playing and is expected to be ready well before Week 1. A former Ravens Round 2 pick, Osemele started 51 games at guard and tackle with Baltimore.
  • Both Ramon Foster and Mark Barron could be Steelers cap casualties, Ed Bouchette of The Athletic writes (subscription required). Foster re-signed to stay in Pittsburgh last year and has started 145 games at guard with the Steelers since 2009. A cut would save the cap-strapped Steelers $4MM. The Rams released Barron last year; he caught on with the Steelers and started nine games. Pittsburgh still has Vince Williams under contract and would save $5.25MM by dropping Barron.

East Rumors: Williams, Jets, Giants, Bills

The Jets are in the mix for Trent Williams and are willing to negotiate a new deal with the Redskins’ disgruntled tackle, were they to pull the trigger on a trade, according to Ralph Vacchiano of SNY. Thus far in the latest round of Williams trade rumors, the Jets and Browns have expressed interest. And the Redskins may well be willing to reduce their asking price. Washington is serious about unloading Williams this time, per Vacchiano, who adds that several around the league believe the franchise will not ask for a first-round pick this time around. The Redskins asked for a first-rounder last year, and Williams predictably remained with the team after the deadline. Both the Browns and Jets hold a second-round pick and two thirds this year.

Shifting away from a Williams deal, here is the latest from the East divisions:

  • Quinnen Williams has an upcoming court date, stemming from his Thursday arrest at LaGuardia Airport, but some updates on this situation have emerged. The Jets defensive lineman was not carrying ammunition for his Glock 19 pistol with him, according to Rich Cimini of ESPN.com. Additionally, the weapon was stored in Williams’ checked baggage, not his carry-on, Darryl Slater of NJ.com reports. Williams was arrested because he did not possess a New York permit for the weapon, only an Alabama permit. Had ammunition been present with the gun, Williams would be facing a much stiffer penalty due to New York’s strict gun laws. The 22-year-old defender will be arraigned March 25 in Queens County criminal court.
  • The Giants have not traded down in Round 1 since 2006; Dave Gettleman has somehow never traded down in any round in seven drafts as a GM. The team famously did not discuss moving down from its No. 2 spot in 2018, when it chose Saquon Barkley, and then surprised the football world by taking Daniel Jones at No. 6 last year. Faced with a bevy of needs, however, the Giants will end up trading down this year, Ryan Dunleavy of NJ.com predicts (via Twitter). Big Blue features needs at tackle, perhaps every linebacker spot and across the secondary.
  • Eight-year NFL veteran Ryan Wendell is entering his second season on the Bills‘ staff, and the former center received a promotion. He will move from offensive assistant to assistant offensive line coach, the Bills announced. This is the former Patriots starter’s first coaching gig. The Bills also promoted three other assistants this week. They moved Shea Tierney to assistant quarterbacks coach, bumped Marc Lubick up to the assistant wideouts coach role and made Jimmy Salgado their nickel coach. All previously resided at lower-level assistant or quality control level.

NFC Notes: Seahawks, Redskins, Prescott

The Seahawks could be adding to their backfield soon. Seattle is still interested in veteran running back Alex Collins, according to Brady Henderson of ESPN.com (Twitter link). The Seahawks worked out Collins back in January, but didn’t end up signing him at the time. Of course there is plenty of familiarity here, as Collins started his career with the Seahawks back in 2016. A fifth-round pick out of Arkansas, Collins was waived after a rookie season where he played sparingly. He signed with Baltimore, and ended up having a breakout 2017 season with the Ravens.

He became their full-time starter, racking up 973 yards and six touchdowns in 15 games. He again operated as their starter for much of the 2018 season, but a foot injury cut his year short. He was arrested in March of last year and waived by the Ravens shortly after. He received a three-game suspension from the league, and spent all of 2019 out of football. Still only 25 he should resurface somewhere for 2020, and it sounds like there’s a good chance it’s with the Seahawks.

Here’s more from the NFC:

  • The Jets are going to have some competition for Trent Williams. Earlier today we heard New York was targeting the left tackle after the Redskins said they would allow him to seek a trade, and they aren’t the only ones. Multiple teams have inquired about Williams since the news broke, a source told Jeremy Fowler of ESPN.com (Twitter link). It’s unclear which teams, although the Browns are apparently thinking about making another run at him. Whoever trades for Williams better be prepared to pay up, as he’s reportedly looking to become the league’s highest-paid tackle on a new contract.
  • Things continue to inch forward with the Cowboys and their pair of superstar impending free agents. The Cowboys met with Dak Prescott‘s agent for the first time since the start of the 2019 season last week, and they met for a second time this past week, a source told Calvin Watkins of The Dallas Morning News. While there appears to be some momentum gathering, it also doesn’t sound like anything is particularly close, as Watkins writes everything is in a “holding pattern” as both sides await a resolution on the new CBA. Watkins writes that Dallas also met with receiver Amari Cooper‘s reps for a second time. Watkins reiterated his earlier report that the Cowboys have offered Prescott an annual salary of $33MM with $105MM in guarantees. It’s likely going to take a lot more than that to get a deal done.
  • The Buccaneers have made a minor addition to Bruce Arians’ coaching staff. Tampa has hired Keith Tandy as their new special teams assistant, according to Greg Auman of The Athletic (Twitter link). As Auman points out it’s a familiar name, since Tandy spent six years with the Bucs as a player from 2012-17. The former safety from West Virginia spent some time with the Falcons in 2018 before hanging up his cleats.