Jets Lock up Young Defender With $21 Million New Deal: Report

Robert Saleh, Jets

Getty New York Jets head coach Robert Saleh reacting on the sideline of an NFL game.

The New York Jets have pulled off a big move ahead of free agency.

NFL Network Insider Tom Pelissero announced on Sunday, March 12 that Gang Green has “agreed to terms” on a brand new contract with linebacker Quincy Williams.

Pelissero says it’s a three-year contract for $18 million but has a maximum value of $21 million with incentives.

Jets Accomplish the Mission Ahead of Free Agency

Reports emerged early on Sunday from both Rich Cimini and Dan Graziano that the team’s desire was to retain Williams before he reached the open market.

A handful of hours later the Jets were able to follow through on that.

The legal tampering period starts at noon on Monday, March 13, and the new league year kicks off on Wednesday, March 15 at 4 pm.

There was pressure from the Jets side to get something done before Williams got a chance to speak with teams legally on Monday.

This $6 million per year evaluation now makes Williams the No. 17 highest-paid linebacker in football, per Over The Cap.

Through his first four seasons in the pros, the former Murray State product had $5.4 million in career earnings, per Spotrac. This new deal gives him great money and the Jets have a key piece of their defense retained ahead of 2023.

Head coach Robert Saleh spoke virtually at the NFL Combine and said the team’s hope was to retain as many pieces on defense as possible. Gang Green was able to check one big item off of their bucket list on Sunday.

Up Next Is Locking in Quinnen Williams on a New Jets Deal

Now that Quincy is locked up, it’s time for the Jets to turn their attention to signing Quinnen Williams to a long-term deal.

We have some good news and some bad news on that front.

The good news is signing his older brother Quincy can only help during contract negotiations. Gang Green did their part to make sure the pair of brothers stayed together for the foreseeable future.

Signing Quincy can only help those contract discussions.

Here is where we get to the bad news of the day. The Washington Commanders agreed to a new long-term deal with defensive tackle Daron Payne on Sunday, March 12.

It now makes him the second highest-paid interior defensive lineman in football only behind Aaron Donald. Adam Schefter of ESPN said it was a four-year deal for $90 million with $60 million of that guaranteed.

The longer the Jets wait, the higher the Quinnen price tag is ultimately going to be. There are plenty of young talented defensive tackles who are set to receive historic paydays this offseason.

It would behoove Quinnen and his camp to wait those out so he can ask for more than the last guy got. However, on the Jets’ side of things, the more proactive they’re the better it’ll be in the long run.

The problem of course is the Jets are trying to find out who the quarterback will be and how much that’ll cost. That decision has likely eaten up a lot of the Jets’ time and will continue to do so until that problem is resolved.

That will likely push the Quinnen discussions to the backburner for the time being which could prove costly.

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