Chicago Bears Free Agency Sign or Pass: Daryl Williams

Chicago Bears (Photo by Timothy T Ludwig/Getty Images)
Chicago Bears (Photo by Timothy T Ludwig/Getty Images) /

The Chicago Bears missed out on signing Daryl Williams in free agency last offseason. He was someone we profiled about this exact time last season and debated signing him. He wound up with the Buffalo Bills and started every game at right tackle, leading all the way through the conference championship game.

It is fair to say the Bills got their money’s worth. Still, now he enters free agency with a chance to see a bigger contract after a better, and healthier 2020 season. Should the Chicago Bears look to Daryl Williams to fill their issues at right tackle?

Chicago Bears should sign Daryl Williams

First off, for a team that had to start four different linemen at right tackle last season, they should not be too picky in how they upgrade the line. A right tackle who was good enough for Buffalo last season should be appealing.

In 16 games last season Williams allowed 21 pressures. Bobby Massie allowed 16 in eight games, Germain Ifedi allowed six in five games, Rashaad Coward allowed seven in two games, and Jason Spriggs allowed five in one game. Combined, they allowed 34 pressures at the right tackle spot.

That is a pretty clear upgrade, and on a per-snap basis, he graded out as a better pass protector than all four of the Bears options. This is a clear upgrade at a position of need.

Why should Chicago Bears pass on signing Daryl Williams at right tackle?

The biggest question is going to be his market value. Over the cap valued him at $15 million per year, while Spotrac valued him at $15 over two years. Meanwhile, PFF has him at $30 million over 3 years, a medium. That is a pretty significant difference between the three.

On the other end, Buffalo has to be smiling that they paid him $2.25 million last season. No matter, he is going to triple that. When the Bills signed him, it is value, now you are paying for what the Bills got.

We saw with Robert Quinn that he balled out on a one-year contract with Dallas, but got long-term security and his play dropped. Williams will be 29 this offseason and has had a serious knee injury as recently as 2018. This will be his last chance to cash in. Do the Bears want to be that team?

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Beyond that, Williams went from Carolina to Buffalo, which is almost like a pipeline considering both the GM and head coach were hired from the Panthers. Williams has stayed loyal to that staff and group, so it would be tough to get him out of his element without overpaying. It would be nice to replicate his 2020 production, but there are enough questions as to whether he can consistently do that when he was injured in 2018 and was not nearly as good coming back from injury in 2019. The Bears need tackle help but cannot get desperate.