Raiders WR Tyrell Williams Might Have Reason to Opt For Shoulder Surgery Sooner Than Later

The Raiders have a tough decision coming up on veteran wide receiver Tyrell Williams. Or more specifically, it could be Williams who has the tough decision coming up.

Williams tore his labrum in practice last week and is reportedly going to try to play through the injury this year. It’s something that he has done twice before in his career, but the stakes are a little different this year.

Here’s why.

After drafting Henry Ruggs III and Bryan Edwards, the Raiders are in a strong position to move on from Williams after the 2020 season. Williams has a cap number of $11.6 million next year and you’ll be hard-pressed to find anyone who thinks the Raiders are going to pay him – especially now that he’s battled significant injuries in each of the last two years.

Given that Williams is probably going to be a free agent in 2021 (regardless of how this season plays out), it will be in his best interest to be at full strength by the time free agency begins in March. For that reason, it would stand to reason that Williams might want to have surgery on his labrum sooner rather than later. Or at the very least, not risk another injury that would set him back even more.

Credit to Williams for hoping to play through a torn labrum (again), but at some point it will probably be a good business decision for him to make sure he is healthy in time to avoid hurting his stock in free agency. Given that he’ll be 29 when he hits free agency (assuming the Raiders let him go after the season), Williams probably only has one more healthy contract coming his way.

Clearly, Williams wants to play this year, but at some point he’s going to have a tough decision to make. He can put off surgery, play through pain, and risk further injury or take the safer route and make sure he’s healthy enough to get one more decent contract before he turns 30.

However things play out, there’s no question the Raiders were counting on Williams this year. He has a year under his belt with Derek Carr in Jon Gruden’s offense and this was supposed to be a big year for him.

Hopefully that can somehow still be the case.

twitter: @raidersbeat