The New York Giants want to bring back Leonard Williams next season, but how they use the franchise tag could become a point of contention.
On Tuesday, New York Giants general manager Dave Gettleman teased the idea of slapping a franchise or transition tag on Leonard Williams. According to a report from SNY’s Ralph Vacchiano, Williams is concerned with whether or not he will be tagged as a defensive end or defensive tackle.
“If the Giants do franchise Williams in the next few weeks, they are expected to tag him as a defensive tackle,” wrote Vacchiano. “And if they do, Williams’ camp will likely file a grievance claiming he should be tagged as a defensive end, according to an NFL source.”
Williams stands to make more as a defensive end, but he plays both positions on the line. This is a tricky situation for the Giants to navigate. Gettleman traded two draft picks to the New York Jets to acquire Williams.
He did this despite the fact that Williams would be an unrestricted free agent in the offseason and it was unlikely that the Jets would re-sign him.
In 15 games with the Jets and Giants last season, Williams finished with 46 tackles, and a career-low in both tackles for a loss (two) and sacks (0.5).
The former Pro Bowler has not developed into the dominant lineman that many believed he would become when he was coming out of USC. After all, the Jets took Williams with the sixth-overall pick in the 2015 NFL Draft.