Javonte Williams had his coming out party four weeks ago. Perhaps the Denver Broncos will consider this confirmation instead.
On Sunday Night Football, the Broncos fell in a lopsided affair to the Kansas City Chiefs in embarrassing fashion, a 22-9 loss that featured a garbage time touchdown and plenty of other miscues that could have featured an even greater disparity in the final score. Alas, the lone silver lining for Denver was at least seeing Williams showcase the sort of production that a team hopes to see from a second-round investment.
In a losing effort, Williams did anything and everything he could to help the Broncos offense move the chains. Unfortunately, the play calling of the coaching staff and the production (or lack thereof) from Teddy Bridgewater kept the Broncos from being able to capitalize on the help offered up by Williams.
Javonte Williams looks like a rising star in the AFC West for the Broncos.
No one within the organization will say it out loud, of course, but Williams can at least know that help will be coming this offseason. There’s simply no way general manager George Paton is going to go to bat (wrong sport) for another season without changes at both quarterback and coaching staff. Whether or not that means head coach Vic Fangio stays or goes is not clear, but at least some coordinator-level changes have to be made. And a new starting quarterback is a foregone conclusion.
For now, the Broncos will have to find the silver linings they can and here they have one in Williams, who looked like a rising star in the AFC West on Sunday night. Back in Week 9, Williams had his first 100-yard game as a pro with 111 on only 17 carries. On Sunday, he did it again against the Chiefs with 102 yards on 23 carries, but he also added another 6 catches of 9 targets for 76 yards and 1 touchdown through the air. If that sounds rare, it is.
Note that the Broncos have had some fine rookies in their franchise history, and Williams looks like he’s well on his way to joining that pantheon of performers.
So far on the season, Williams has 140 carries for 670 yards and 2 touchdowns on the ground to go with 33 catches, 269 yards, and 2 touchdowns receiving. If Melvin Gordon continues to sit with an injury (or even if not), it’s quite possible Williams crosses the 1,000 yard mark from scrimmage as soon as next week against the visiting Detroit Lions.
The greater feeling after Week 13 will no doubt be one of sadness for the Broncos, but at least there are signs of life for the future—specifically that they have a star running back in the making to go with what is already an impressive young cadre of pass catchers. Javonte Williams looks like the real deal.