As Trent Williams holdout with Washington continues, speculation amps up around where he will go. The Jets, Browns, and Texans are all teams whose names are in the conversations, alongside The New England Patriots.
Tom Brady, who recently celebrated his 42 birthday, recently signed a two year, $41-million contract extension. This new deal saved over $5 million in cap space, putting the Patriots somewhere in the $12-13 million range in total cap space available.
With some money in the bank and room for improvements, Williams may not be far out of reach.
The Patriots could take a shot at the veretan offensive tackle for a few reasons. Currently, the tackle depth for New England is very young. Isaiah Wynn, the projected started at left tackle, is heading into his second season.
Wynn is around the same weight and just three inches shorter than Williams. He was drafted out of Georgia to the Patriots in the first round of the 2018 NFL Draft. In 2018 he was injured in training camp and began his first regular season on the bench.
Dan Skipper is another young guy and sitting second on the left tackle depth chart. He has only one year on his resume and has seen time on four different practice squads. Dallas signed him as a rookie free agent in May of 2017.
Cedrick Lang isn’t a guy to get your hopes up about either. In his two years in the league, he has seen more time on the practice squad than on a regular-season roster. Similar to Skipper, they both sit second and third, respectively, at the left tackle and right tackle positions.
The most experience comes from Marcus Cannon, the starting right tackle. He was drafted by New England in the fifth round of the 2011 NFL Draft.
In his nine-year career, Cannon has seen 42 regular-season starts. Most of these starts were at right tackles, with only a handful at left guard and left tackle. While Cannon secures the right tackle position, it’s evident that the Patriots currently lack longevity at the left tackle spot.
Williams’ experience could be beneficial for a young roster. Plus, if Wynn ever goes out injured again, Williams is a more reliable guy there to lean on.
Some of the concern surrounding Williams is his health and previous injuries. He has come back from several injuries, but apparently the issues for him lie with whom he sees fit to rehab him. Due to this mistrust, Williams has stated that one of the main reasons he wants to leave Washington is because of the medical staff.
For a guy like Williams, and really any athlete, it is imperative to surround yourself with a medical team you can trust. Meanwhile, New England’s medical team has done a good job of getting guys back into shape, like an injury-plagued now-retire tight end.
If New England is looking for a long-term addition to the tackle depth, the answer isn’t a 31-year-old guy. In this case, grabbing the veteran linemen would be a short-term fix. The future of the organization, however, will rest in the laps of the young guys.