Back to square one: Williams wants trade or a new deal, per report

Chris Lingebach
February 27, 2020 - 4:45 pm
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Nearly nine months after this saga began, the Redskins seem to be right back where they started with Trent Williams: with the left tackle wanting a new contract or a trade.

According to Mike Garafolo of NFL Network, substantive talks between Ron Rivera and Williams have led them back to square one. Williams wants more money.

Per Garafolo: "Sources familiar with the situation, who have spoken to me and Ian Rapoport, said that in the communication recently between Williams and the Redskins, Williams said, 'If you're not gonna redo my deal,' – and a reminder, he's heading into the last year of his contract – 'if you're not gonna redo it, then trade me.'

"And the Redskins in response said, 'Look, we've got a lot going on here. We've got a new regime. We're getting settled.' So at the very least, the impression we're getting is that that's pushed to the back burner."

This whirlwind all began when Williams declined to appear for mandatory minicamp last June, with Williams reportedly requesting a trade or a new deal. That set forth a bitter spiral of bad will, leading former team president Bruce Allen to call Williams' bluff in threatening to hold out the entire 2019 season.

Rivera has made a point since his arrival to reverse those negative feelings. Allen is gone, and so is the training staff spearheaded by Larry Hess which Williams grew distrust for after a cancer misdiagnosis. With a new training staff in place and Rivera as the new leader, the Redskins appear to be in a much better place with Williams.

But the sticking point remains the same as it did last summer. Per JP Finlay of NBC Sports Washington: "The best read on the situation is Williams likely won't play on his current contract, which has one year remaining and a salary cap charge of $14.5 million. None of that money is guaranteed."

"What seems impossible, or at least unlikely at this point, is that Williams wears the Burgundy and Gold this fall unless a new contract emerges," Finlay adds.

Williams will be 32 when the 2020 season kicks off, and after a year off, one has to presume he's healthy. But he still carries the same wear-and-tear of someone who's played an average of 12.25 games per season dating back to 2015 (2019 excluded). The Redskins know what they're getting and know what he's worth.

Given Williams' demands and Washington only possessing five picks in the coming draft, one might figure between now an April 23 is as good a time as they're gonna have to maximize what's left of his diminished trade value.

You'd have to imagine the Redskins already know what they're willing to offer Williams, and also if it's enough for him to accept. Which makes dragging this out all the more unlikely.

Some form of a resolution is coming soon.

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