The Lions RB will enter free agency coming off his best season to date, finishing with career-highs in attempts, yards, and touchdowns. Boardroom projects what his next contract may look like.
Jamaal Williams entered the 2022 season splitting the backfield with D’Andre Swift, two running backs with something to prove. Swift didn’t have a bad season, but it was riddled with injury, which opened the door for Williams to take over. The 27-year-old seized the opportunity and went off, passing Barry Sanders’ franchise record for most rushing touchdowns in a single season with 17.
Williams, playing in the final year of a two-year, $6 million contract, rushed for 13 total touchdowns in five seasons prior — four that came with the Green Bay Packers. The power back was mostly utilized on the goal line but saw his volume increase as Swift shuffled in and out of the lineup with injuries.
As he enters free agency this offseason, it wouldn’t be surprising if Williams earned himself some money through his play and leadership in 2022. And depending on how 2023 shakes out, the same could be said about Swift when he’s set to become a free agent in 2024. Whether or not the two running backs will stay in Detroit is yet to be seen, but it wouldn’t be surprising to see one or both of them continue playing for the Lions moving forward.
So in the case of Williams, how much could he potentially muster up in a new deal as a free agent? Boardroom explores what a Jamaal Williams contract extension may look like after his breakout, record-breaking campaign.
What is Jamaal Williams’ 2023 Market Value?
Spotrac determines its own market value estimates based on a player’s age, contract status, and statistical production. It doesn’t take into account wins, awards, injuries, or playoff performance, but it’s a useful measuring stick when comparing other players’ contracts.
Unfortunately for Williams, should the market value play out as it appears below, he’ll still be one of the lower-paid RBs in the NFL, despite a historic season for Detroit.
Projecting the size of a Jamaal Williams contract extension
- By Spotrac’s estimates, a Williams contract extension could be pegged at two years and $8,355,328. That would rank No. 31 among RBs in terms of total value.
- His average annual salary is projected at $4,177,664, which would rank 18th — one spot ahead of JD McKissic.
Comparable RBs by Value
|PLAYER||YRS||TOTAL||AAV||AGE WHEN SIGNED|
Comparable RBs by Stats
|PLAYER||RUSH Y/G||RUSH TD/G||RATING|
Of course, that figure above might fluctuate based on how much revenue the league brings in and how much more teams are allowed to spend next year. Williams exceeds nearly every stat on this board, but the market for RBs is relatively low despite providing a ton of production.
This list in particular almost doesn’t feel right. Wilson Jr. and Conner are the only starters on the list, while Boston Scott and Kenyan Drake became afterthoughts this past season. When competing for the top spot, the latter can technically happen if the Lions choose to go with the homegrown young star in Swift.
We’ll just have to wait and find out.
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