The Chargers are going to do what it takes to keep receiver Mike Williams, who is scheduled to become a free agent later this month.
The team is prepared to use the franchise tag on Williams if they can’t reach a long-term deal with him before March 8, Tyler Dragon of USA Today reports.
Williams, the seventh overall choice in 2017, made $15.68 million on the fifth-year option last season.
Williams, 27, had a career year with 76 catches for 1,146 yards and nine touchdowns in 2021. Only his touchdown catches and average per catch were not career highs.
He had six game-tying or go-ahead touchdowns this season, which were the most in the league since Sterling Sharpe in 1989. In the fourth quarter, Williams had 432 yards and seven touchdowns.
Thus, Williams’ return is important for third-year quarterback Justin Herbert, who has yet to have the same head coach, same offensive coordinator and same key weapons in back-to-back seasons in his college or pro career. So it makes sense that the Chargers will ensure Williams’ return.