The Los Angeles Chargers resolved one of their more notable offseason dilemmas when they came to terms with wide receiver Mike Williams on a three-year, $60 million deal earlier in the week. While there was much speculation that the Chargers would end up placing the franchise tag on him, they elected to instead sign him to a multiyear deal to avoid facing this issue once again next year.
Overall, there were multiple factors behind Williams’ decision to avoid free agency and stay put with the Chargers. Among them was his aspiration to continue to play alongside Chargers quarterback Justin Herbert, which he touched on to the NFL Network’s “NFL Now” program.
“That was one of the biggest things,” Williams said. “As a quarterback like Justin Herbert, it don’t get too much better than him.
“I feel like he’s a great quarterback, a franchise quarterback. I feel like we still got a lot more to build on in the future and we are looking forward to that in this offseason, going out there and making plays and having fun.”
Williams emerged as a go-to target for Herbert in the passer’s opening two seasons in the NFL. For one, the former Oregon Ducks quarterback targeted Williams 129 times last season, and the wideout came away with 76 receptions for 1,146 yards.
The Chargers’ 2021 campaign came to an end following their Week 18 road loss to the Las Vegas Raiders. Even after such a defeat, Williams believes that the Chargers have the ability to take the “next level.”
“Just believing in what we can do,” Williams said. “That’s the main thing, trust in us, trust in the preparation. Trust each other on this team. Trust the process. … I feel like we have the pieces to take this thing to the next level. We just got to continue to get better everyday and let everything happen on its own.”
That next level for the Chargers would be a berth in the playoffs. Even with the expanded playoffs in the past two seasons, the Chargers missed out on playing postseason football in Herbert’s first two years in the NFL.
The Chargers are expected to face hefty competition in the AFC West next season from the reigning division champions in the Kansas City Chiefs and the new-look Denver Broncos and Raiders.