Headed into the new year, the New York Giants are one of the most injured teams in the NFL. The list of injured players includes one of the team’s top pass rushers, Leonard Williams, who is responsible for 5.5 sacks this year and has still appeared in the team’s recent games in spite of this triceps injury. Whether he finishes the season on the field or on the sideline however, Williams will have a choice in the offseason.
That choice is between going for a natural recovery or getting surgery. It’s uncertain what the final outcome will be, but according to Williams himself, avoiding surgery is likely. It’s something that the defensive lineman claimed he would avoid at all costs when speaking to reporters on Thursday.
Leonard Williams on the chances of surgery
“I don’t think so. I think I’m going to be able to just work the small muscles around it, keep getting treatment,” Williams said before elaborating further, when asked if he would require surgery in the offseason. “Personally, I would like to avoid surgery at all costs, regardless of the injury. That’s from personal experience and also from what I’ve heard around the league from vets when I came in as a younger guy – ‘if you can avoid surgery, do it.’”
Williams went into his experience as a college player. According to him, avoiding surgery back then worked out better than the alternative.
“It’s because I had two shoulder labrum tears in college. One I got surgery on and one I didn’t, and I still feel the effects of the one I got surgery on. It feels like every once in a while, it clicks or like the screws that are in there just kind of bother me and stuff like that.”
Williams has the second most sacks of any Giant this season behind Azeez Ojulari. Surgery or not, the Giants will need him healthy next year to avoid regressing in the pass rush – a spot that the team is already lacking in. Especially if the focus in the first round of the draft goes towards improving the offensive line, rather than adding more talent to rush the passer.
For now, the Giants still have two games left – and despite the injury, we might see Williams on the field for them.