Why Terrance Williams Days as a Dallas Cowboy are Numbered
Contract years are when you usually see a player take that next leap in his development. You saw it from Josh Norman, and Oliver Vernon last season. After a pretty average start to their careers, Norman and Vernon saw a big leap in their play in the last year of their contract, which netted each player a huge payday in the offseason. Through three games this has not been the case for Terrance Williams. In fact he has done the exact opposite of elevate his play. In my opinion, this has been the worst three game stretch in Terrance Williams career.
If you look at just statistics, Terrance Williams hasn't been that bad. Williams is fourth on the team in targets (8), catches (7), yards (122), and leads the team in yards per reception (17.4.) Let's dig a little bit deeper into these numbers. If you take away Terrance's week three performance where he had 4 catches for 88 yards, in the first two games Terrance Williams had 3 catches for 44 yards in two weeks. In his week three performance, 47 of those 88 yards came off of one catch. That 47 yard catch came at the beginning of when Terrance Williams broke a post route to the next level and ran for 47 yards. What was going to be a huge gain that would take the Cowboys into the red zone and put the metaphorical nail in the coffin, was all taken away because Williams fumbled the football at the Chicago 17 yard line and Adrian Amos returned it all the to the Bears 40 yard line. Some people might give Terrance Williams a pass because the Cowboys were up 21 points and the game had seemed like it was already over, but not me. This fumbled could have easily avoided. First, you are taught as a receiver whenever possessing the ball, always keep it in the hand closest to the sidelines and away from defenders. Not only did he keep the ball in his right hand while racing down the left sidelines, but he had such a loose grip on the football that it was easily poked away by Jacoby Glenn. I wish I could say this is the only boneheaded move we've seen from Terrance Williams this season.
Let me set the scene. Its week 1 and the Dallas Cowboys are hosting division foe the New York football Giants. The Cowboys are down one with 12 seconds left and Dak Prescott has the ball at his own 46 on a 3rd and 10. The Cowboys have no timeouts. Terrance Williams runs an out route to the sidelines, Dak completes the pass to Williams at the Giants 47, and he can very easily run out of bounds at the 45 to give the Cowboys a shot at the game winning field goal. Terrance instead stops in his tracks, cuts up field, dives to the 40, and once he realized what he had just done, the clock had run out and the Giants had picked up the victory. Now I know what you're about to say, "even if Terrance Williams does run out of bounds, there's no guarantee that Dan Bailey is making a 62 yard field goal to win the game." You are 100% right. There is no guarantee that Bailey makes that field goal, but I like my chances with Dan Bailey, who was 5/5 on field goals on the day.
The misuse of clock management wasn't all Williams fault. To start the drive, Dak Prescott found Lance Dunbar on a 5 yard curl that he turned into a 17 yard reception before falling to the ground in bounds. With a little more effort, Dunbar probably gets out of bounds and saves the Cowboys about 12 seconds. Two plays later, Dak missed a wide open Jason Witten who would have probably scored a touchdown, but at the very least would have gotten in field goal range if the two connected. The loss wasn't fully on Terrance Williams. He's just the icing on top of the disaster cake.
If Terrance Williams had shown great statistical numbers in years past and had consistently produced on the field, then I wouldn't be so hard on him, but this just isn't the case. Last season Terrance Williams was the #1 receiver for most of the year with Dez Bryant out do to injury, and he didn't produce like one. Williams' 94 targets last season were the most in his career by a wide margin, as his previous career high was 74 back in his rookie season in 2013. Terrance 52 catches last season was only 8 more than his rookie season. His 3 touchdowns last season was a career low. I'm not saying he needs to produce 1,500 yards, 90 catches, and 9 touchdowns every season, but I need more production out of my #2 receiver.
With Terrance Williams set to hit the free agent market this season, he is going to get paid by someone. Last season we saw Mohamed Sanu and Marvin Jones each get over $6 million a year. Terrance should be one of the top receivers in next years free agent class, one that is headlined by Alshon Jeffrey, Michael Floyd, Desean Jackson, and Vincent Jackson. Some team is going to pay Terrance Williams, and I doubt it's the Cowboys. Let me know your thoughts. Should the Cowboys resign Terrance Williams? Let me know by leaving a comment below and tweeting me @Texashomeboy1!