Broncos should consider surprise trade to reload at running back position

It might be time for Javonte Williams to get a fresh start elsewhere.
Denver Broncos
Denver Broncos / Candice Ward/GettyImages

Running backs are a dime a dozen. Just look at how the offseason has gone with huge names leaving their teams in free agency which has left some roster holes for other teams. And the Denver Broncos should capitalize on that by trading one of their own running backs.

Javonte Williams, affectionately known as "Pookie", has been a monster since the Broncos traded up to the 35th pick in the 2021 NFL Draft to get him when he came into the NFL out of North Carolina. I can remember seeing this man get contacted behind the line of scrimmage only to stiffarm and truck people over to get positive yardage. Sadly, in 2022 he had a devastating knee injury that sidelined him and 2023 was his first year back. And boy, did he not look like himself.

Knee injuries are hard for any player but they are especially hard on running backs with all the cutting. Thankfully, Williams would rather go through you than around you, something that Broncos Country has grown to love. It's no secret that Sean Payton wants to run the ball and run it often, but last year? That didn't work. You can blame the offensive line, you can blame Russell Wilson, but Williams also only managed 3.6 yards per carry last season according to ESPN (let's not even talk about that most other starting running backs last season scored more rushing touchdowns on their own than our whole team). He just didn't quite look like himself and there's a chance that he may never get back there.

With that being said, there are plenty of teams out there with a hole in their running back room that would take a chance on Williams and hope he gets back to his previous form. Josh Jacobs left the Raiders for greener pastures (see what I did there?), Saquon defected to Philly, and King Henry is in Baltimore. There are plenty of places that might want to trade for Williams and depending on the return, it's something Denver should consider.

Denver previously went out and signed Samaje Perine as a backup to Williams, although I see him as more of a 1B. Perine would be more than fine as a starter and then Jaleel McLaughlin can back him up. Denver could then look to the draft for another running back if they wanted, such as Jonathon Brooks or Jaylen Wright, whom Denver reportedly has interest in.

Don't get me wrong, I love Williams. His hard-nosed running is a treat to watch but if we want to get some extra draft capital I think the rest of his career would be best spent somewhere else.