New York Jets All-Pro defensive tackle Quinnen Williams is not attending the start of the team’s voluntary workouts while he seeks a contract extension, a person with knowledge of the situation told The Associated Press.

Williams is staying away from the team while the sides negotiate a potential new deal, according to the person who spoke to the AP on condition of anonymity because teams don’t announce who doesn’t attend the voluntary offseason program. Williams’ absence Monday was expected after he said in January he wouldn’t participate without a new contract.

NFL Network first reported that Williams was not present Monday as the Jets began their offseason program.

The 25-year-old Williams, a first-time All-Pro and Pro Bowl selection last season, is entering the final year of his rookie contract after being drafted third overall out of Alabama in 2019. He is due to make a fully guaranteed $9.6 million this year after his fifth-year option was picked up by the Jets last offseason.

Williams is in line for a big payday as other interior defensive linemen have received large contracts this offseason. Washington’s Daron Payne received the franchise tag but then agreed last month to a four-year contract worth $90 million, with $60 million guaranteed.

San Francisco signed Javon Hargrave to a four-year, $84 million contract last month. Tennessee’s Jeffrey Simmons agreed earlier this month to a four-year extension reportedly worth up to $94 million, with $66 million guaranteed, including a $24 million signing bonus.

Williams is coming off his best season, when he set career highs with 12 sacks, 28 quarterback hits and 12 tackles for loss while establishing himself as one of the game’s elite defensive tackles. He was also selected the Jets’ MVP by his teammates.

“I did everything right on and off the field,” Williams said the day after the Jets’ 7-10 season ended. “I want to be compensated for what I am.”

Jets general manager Joe Douglas told reporters at the league meetings in Phoenix last month that talks with Williams’ agent were “in a positive place” but added there was “no exact timeline” for when a deal would get completed.

Williams has 27 1/2 career sacks with 60 quarterback hits, 33 tackles for loss, four forced fumbles and two fumble recoveries in his four NFL seasons.

New York re-signed Williams’ older brother Quincy in March, giving the linebacker an $18 million deal that includes $9 million in guarantees.


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