The New York Jets recently traded Darron Lee after Adam Gase was named interim GM. It may not happen very soon, but there's a possibility that the Jets trade Leonard Williams as well.
According to multiple reports, Williams could be moved via trade due to the money that is owed along the defensive line. This offseason, New York re-signed Henry Anderson and drafted Quinnen Williams in the first-round.
Therefore, Leonard Williams could be the odd man out along the defensive line. Williams is heading into the last year of his rookie contract where he is due $14.2 million in 2019.
After this season, the Jets will have a choice to either franchise tag him, let him walk in free agency, or trade him. Tagging him is unlikely as that would likely come at a price around $18 million.
Letting him leave in free agency or trading him are the two best options that New York has. If he leaves in free agency, the Jets would receive a compensatory pick. On the other hand, the Jets could also receive a draft pick or picks for Williams in a trade.
Why not trade him for a chance at a better draft pick? Besides, it seems like Gase isn't hesitant to part ways with anyone that Mike Maccagnan drafted (traded Lee just hours after being named interim GM).
Here are three teams who should pursue a trade for Leonard Williams.
3. Tennessee Titans
First and foremost, Williams needs to go to a team who runs a 3-4 defensive scheme. One team who runs a 3-4 and is need of defensive end help is the Tennessee Titans.
The Titans are strong on the interior with Jurrell Casey, but they could use some talent around him. Casey is one of the best interior defensive linemen in the NFL.
Since being drafted by the Jets in 2015, Williams has totaled 17 sacks, 220 tackles, 32 tackles for loss, and 85 quarterback hits. Those numbers are solid, but he hasn't lived up to the expectations that the Jets had for him just yet.
Williams is only 25 years old, leaving him with a ton of potential still in his career. Placing him alongside someone like Casey could be what is needed to bring the best out of Williams as a defensive end.
2. Denver Broncos
Could you imagine a defensive line that included Bradley Chubb, Von Miller, and Leonard Williams? John Elway has an opportunity to make it a reality by giving the Jets a call.
Last season, Chubb showed the world he can be one of the best edge-rushers in the NFL in his rookie season. Chubb finished with 12 sacks, 60 tackles, and 14 tackles for loss with the Denver Broncos last year.
Of course, Von Miller is still one of the elite edge-rusher that the NFL has to offer, even at 30 years old. Adding Williams at defensive end would make Denver's defensive front even more formidable with Derek Wolfe at the other end spot.
The Broncos have been trying to return to being one of the best defenses in the NFL again like they were when they won a Super Bowl in 2015. Trading for Williams could take them a step further in the right direction.
1. Arizona Cardinals
Another team who would be wise to pursue a trade for Williams is the Arizona Cardinals. With the addition of Vance Joseph as their defensive coordinator, the Cardinals will revert back to a 3-4 defensive scheme.
In 2018, Arizona went to playing a 4-3 scheme with Steve Wilks as their head coach. After just one season, the Cardinals fired Wilks and hired Kliff Kingsbury.
Kingsbury likely won't make decisions as it pertains to the defense but he brought in a well-regarded coordinator in Joseph to run the defense. Therefore, Arizona needs to add guys who fit a 3-4 scheme better.
Chandler Jones played defensive end last season in the Cardinals 4-3 defense, but he will likely return to his outside linebacker role in 2019. That leaves a hole at one of their defensive end spots.
Williams would be a perfect fit for Joseph's defense and could succeed alongside Jones coming off the edge next to him. At just 25 years old, Williams makes a ton of sense for a team who is still reshaping their roster towards more youth.
The Cardinals would be remiss to not at least try to work out a deal to land Williams. After all, maybe the Jets defensive end just needs a change of scenery to showcase his talents further.