The first thing that the LA Chargers did in what became a very eventful offseason was re-sign Mike Williams to a new deal. While some fans were against bringing back Williams and "overpaying" him, it made more sense for the Chargers to bring back one of Justin Herbert's favorite targets while Herbert is on his rookie deal.
Williams and the Chargers agreed to a three-year, $60 million contract. Those against re-signing Williams at the time argued that it was too much and the argument for Williams was quite simple; the contract would age gracefully as the next slew of receivers got paid.
That has already happened and it continues to happen for the Chargers even in the driest NFL month of the year. The Washington Commanders agreed to a new three-year contract that is worth up to $71 million with star receiver Terry McLaurin.
McLaurin is a really good receiver and he should be entering his prime years in the league, so this was a no-brainer for the Commanders. McLaurin has been more consistent over the last three years than Mike Williams and has had to deal with far worse quarterbacks than Williams has. That being said, I would not say that McLaurin is miles ahead of Williams on the NFL hierarchy.
Heck, Pro Football Focus ranked McLaurin 15th and Williams 19th, putting them in the same ballpark. McLaurin getting yet another contract that is more expensive than Williams' contract just shows that the Chargers were right to give Williams a contract when they did.
Terry McLaurin's new contract makes Chargers' Mike Williams the 10th-highest-paid receiver in the NFL.
There were concerns when the Chargers signed Williams that the team would be paying the WR2 on the roster top-five receiver money. As the market tends to do, it quickly re-adjusted and put Williams right around where he should be in terms of average salary per year.
Before McLaurin's deal, Williams had the 9th-highest average annual salary among NFL wide receivers. McLaurin pushes him to 10. Williams is tied with two other receivers at the $20 million per season mark as Amari Cooper agreed to a five-year, $100 million contract and Chris Godwin agreed to a three-year, $60 million contract.
Both of those contracts were agreed to after Williams was re-signed, which is the case for most of the contracts ahead of him. D.J. Moore, A.J. Brown, Cooper Kupp, Davante Adams and Tyreek Hill all signed their new contracts after Williams signed his contract with the Chargers.
The only receivers ahead of him who signed their deal before Williams did is DeAndre Hopkins, Stefon Diggs and Keenan Allen.
Once again, the market shifts. Williams may have seemed overpaid at the time of his contract but just a few short months showed that the Bolts were simply ahead of the curve.