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Javonte Williams' receiving edge disappears

By Jared Smola | Updated on Sun, 17 Dec 2023, 3:11 PM EST
Javonte Williams Headshot

Broncos RB Javonte Williams didn't just let you down with his production in Saturday night's loss to the Lions. He saw his playing time and route participation tumble. It started with Denver putting Jaleel McLaughlin on the field to open the game. Williams took over for the second possession and still led the backfield in playing time and touches. But his 48% playing time for the game marked his lowest since a Week 6 return from a quad injury. That followed three straight games of 60%+. His biggest dip came in the passing game. Williams ran a route on just 25.7% of QB Russell Wilson's dropbacks. That marked a significant fall vs. three straight outings of 40.5% or more. Williams ran just nine routes vs. eight for Samaje Perine and five for Jaleel McLaughlin. Combine that with now seven straight games of averaging less than 3.9 yards per carry, and it's tough to see Williams as more than an "if you need him" starter for a Week 16 matchup with the Patriots. We'll see about his role and performance in that game before declaring his usability for a better matchup with the Chargers in Week 17. Perine drew just 1 target for the game but caught it for 11 yards and averaged 6.2 yards across his 6 carries. That followed a 5-catch Week 14 and couldn't have hurt his chances at getting playing time the rest of the way. McLaughlin garnered just 4 touches for the game. He has topped 6 touches just once in his past eight games.

Jared Smola Author Image
Jared Smola, Lead Analyst
Jared has been with Draft Sharks since 2007. He’s now Lead Analyst, heading up the preseason and weekly projections that fuel your Draft War Room and My Team tools. He currently ranks 1st among 133 analysts in draft rankings accuracy.
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