3. Keenan Allen is on his way to regressing
There are some huge Keenan Allen fans who are going to think I am ridiculous for making this comment. As it stands right now, Allen is still a Pro Bowl-caliber receiver and he is just fine as the LA Chargers no. 1 receiver. However, I do think we started to see some signs of slight regression out of Allen in 2021 that will likely carry over into 2022 and beyond.
Am I projecting Allen to be a bad wide receiver in 2022? Absolutely not. However, Allen might not be the bonafide top-10 receiver in 2022 that he has been in years past.
Allen is reaching that point in his career where the arrow starts to point down for these big-name receivers. He is going to turn 30 in April and as we have seen with a lot of players in the NFL, that 30 number is typically the moment when the peak ends. Look at Julio Jones after he turned 30. Sure, Jones has dealt with injuries in recent years, but Allen too has a long injury history that could accelerate his regression.
I still think Allen is going to be a WR1 next season but as mentioned, he will fall down that list. Then, in 2023, we could see more regression as Allen heads into the last year of his contract in 2024. With these warning signs in place, the Chargers cannot afford to be cheap at the wide receiver position moving forward.
Is Williams the perfect fit? No. Will he be slightly overpaid? Yes. But sometimes in the NFL, you have to make these sacrifices to remain competitive. Because if the Chargers don't re-sign Williams then there could be a world in which Allen regresses faster than expected in 2022 and Joshua Palmer does not take that leap that the team is hoping for.
Those are two things that absolutely could happen and having Williams there is a nice buffer for the Chargers. Yes, it would be even better if that buffer was Davante Adams, but when it comes down to it, Williams is the team's most realistic best shot.