LA Chargers: Why Davante Adams should be a 2022 free agency priority

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3. Mike Williams' impending free agency

Unless Williams receives a contract extension prior to the season, he'll be a free agent in 2022. Does the front office view him as a receiver above replacement? I'm not sure as that answer probably depends on his 2021 season.

The LA Chargers seemed content to let Hunter Henry walk after not getting Pro Bowl-level production out of him. They replaced him with Jared Cook, who they feel can give them similar receiving production but for cheaper ($7 million dollars, to be specific).

Joe Lombardi and the coaching staff have talked up Mike Williams a lot. They envision him as a Michael Thomas type X-receiver. To quote Patrick Mahomes, "I'll see it when I believe it". Henry was supposed to have a breakout season in his contract season too, but it just didn't happen if we're being honest. Williams is not the route running game breaker that Thomas is.

But let's assume for the sake of argument that Williams does ball out. He proves that he's worth $18-20 million dollars in AAV. 1000+ yards, 10 touchdowns, 70 receptions for him in 2021. Williams' production firmly entrenches him as a top 15 receiver. Two things can be true-that would be great and I'd still take Adams over him. To me, the difference between paying Adams $28-30 million and Williams $18-20 million is insignificant considering all the cap maneuvering that can be done.

Adams and Williams are also only two years apart in age. It would be something to consider if Williams was say 24 and Adams was in his 30's, but that's not the situation. Williams also has a more extensive injury history combined with a reckless play style.

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If the Chargers don't feel they can acquire Adams next year, I'm fine with bringing Williams back. Williams should not be the reason that Tom Telesco does not pursue the best receiver in the league though.