The New York Jets are ready to add some firepower on the offensive side of the ball.
Longtime NFL analyst Tyler Dunne of Go-Long said on Saturday, March 12 that Detroit Lions running back Jamaal Williams is attracting a ton of interest ahead of free agency.
He mentioned several teams including the green and white who are “very interested” in acquiring the talented playmaker.
Explaining the Jets Interest in Lions RB Jamaal Williams
On the surface, the Jets’ interest in a big-time running back might seem strange. However when you dive a little deeper beneath the surface it makes all of the sense in the world.
Currently Gang Green only has three running backs under contract for the 2023 season:
Hall is coming off of a torn ACL that he suffered during the Week 7 matchup with the Denver Broncos. The team has been spewing positive updates this offseason and has said publically they expect him to be ready for Week 1.
That sounds great on the surface, but it seems like a generously optimistic timeline for his recovery. It would behoove the Jets to play this smartly and cautiously get him ready. They utilized a similar strategy with offensive tackle George Fant last year coming after surgery throughout the offseason.
If Hall is in any way compromised then all that is left in the room is a former undrafted free agent and a fourth-round pick coming off of a rough year.
Running back is a bigger need than anyone is talking about this offseason.
Williams is 27 years of age and he will turn 28 before the start of the 2023 season. He is coming off of a record-breaking campaign with the Lions.
He scored 17 touchdowns on the ground which broke a long-standing Barry Sanders record. Williams also ran for over 1,066 rushing yards and averaged 4.1 yards per clip.
Jamaal Williams Has a Very Clear Connection to Aaron Rodgers
Williams both stylistically and personality wise would be a seamless fit inside the Jets locker room.
Even more so than that is his obvious connection to Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers.
They were teammates together for Williams’ first four seasons in the pros in Green Bay. Jets cornerback Sauce Gardner hinted at the idea of “package deals” that if Rodgers came to New York other pieces could follow.
Earlier this offseason the former BYU product made an appearance on Good Morning Football and predicted that Rodgers would be playing for the Jets in 2023.
Spotrac’s market value projections expect Williams to land a two-year deal on the open market with an annual average of $4.1 million.
According to Over The Cap, that salary would make him the No. 20 highest-paid running back in football.
Although coming off of that monster season from a touchdown perspective could drive that price up a few percentage points on the open market.
Williams is a tough, hard-nosed runner, a team leader, that could provide a nice balance in the Jets backfield. With a limited amount of cap space, it’ll be interesting to see how they divvy everything up positionally speaking.