The New York Giants made the questionable decision to retain Leonard Williams via the franchise tag. As a result, the largely unproven 25-year-old will pocket $16.1 million for the 2020 season, making him one of the highest-paid players at his position.
That $16.1 million sees Williams earning more in 2020 than Houston Texans star DE JJ Watt, who is set to make $15.5 million, which truly puts into perspective how mind-boggling Dave Gettleman's decision was.
We understand it's a bad look to let a guy who you acquired for third- and fifth-round draft picks hit free agency, but this price is simply too high. Williams, who was traded from the Jets to the Giants last season, has recorded just 17.5 sacks across his 79-game career. In 15 games last year, Williams recorded just 0.5 sacks. Sure, he's good at stopping the run and applying pressure at times, but is that really worth using 20% of your free salary cap, especially when he's being stubborn about a long-term deal?
Watt, on the other hand, has three separate seasons under his belt in which he's recorded 17.5 or more sacks. Despite being hampered by injury of late, the fact that Watt is earning less than Williams is a crime.
Giants fans are less than thrilled about the lofty sum Williams will be making in 2020, and when they compare his deal to some of his fellow top-tier defensive linemen, it'll only stand to fuel the calls for Dave Gettleman's job.