The New York Giants will use their franchise tag designation on defensive lineman Leonard Williams for a second straight year, per multiple reports. This is the second straight season the Giants will use the tag on Williams, so he will receive a 20% pay raise on his 2020 salary instead of the tender amount.
Williams is coming off a career year in which he recorded 11.5 sacks, 14 tackles for a loss, and 30 quarterback hits. There are multiple reports of optimism the two sides can get a long-term deal done, but Dan Duggan is reporting the sides aren’t particularly close to a deal. Duggan did acknowledge things can change in a hurry.
There is one notable bit of contention around this franchise tag. The Giants tagged him as a defensive tackle last year and would look to do the same this year. However, Williams has filed a grievance with the NFLPA to be listed as a defensive end. The franchise tender is based on the average of salaries at the position, and that is higher for defensive ends than defensive tackles. Last year, the DT franchise tag tender paid Williams $16,126,000. Had he been paid as a DE, he would have received $17,788,000. His franchise tag will once again pay him as a DT in 2021 at a total of $19,351,200.