Broncos running back Javonte Williams had a wild and fast recovery coming off ACL, LCL, and PCL tears. He got injured during week 4 of the 2022-2023 season and was able to get back and start in week 1 of this 2023-24 season. His injury last season was a season-ending injury and he was not expected to be back at the beginning of this season, but his recovery went well and he even played in the preseason.
It was huge for Denver to get their RB1 earlier than expected, but Williams struggled for much of this season.
Javonte had the following stats:
- 16 games
- 217 carries
- 774 yards
- 3.56 yards/attempt
- 3 touchdowns
- 47 receptions - 228 yards - 2 touchdowns
Among Broncos running backs, he led in three categories ... carries, yards, and touchdowns, but has struggled in breaking tackles, getting through open space, and even having 5+ yard runs. His longest run of the season was 21 yards and he has had only two 20+ yard runs (a 21 yd run against the Packers in week 7, and a 20 yd run against the Chargers in week 14). Williams' season-high in rushing yards in a game was back in Week 8 against the Kansas City Chiefs with 85.
Javonte has been running into his offensive linemen. He is a very physical running back but has not been able to break tackles, as he did in his rookie season.
My concern is that the offensive line has been doing its job, and has been great in run blocking, plus the other running backs Jaleel McLaughlin and Samaje Perine have been able to have very good runs. With that being said...
Will Javonte Williams be the Broncos RB1 going forward?
The Broncos were a run-heavy team this season and can continue to be moving forward. With McLaughlin being the explosive guy and Perine being the receiving back, I do not think that it is clear that Javonte will be Denver's RB1 in the future, especially with a loaded free-agent class that includes guys like Josh Jacobs, Saquon Barkley, Derrick Henry, D'Andre Swift, and Austin Ekeler, among others.
Javonte is still young and the Broncos could get draft capital for him, especially with the cap situation if Denver ends up releasing quarterback Russell Wilson, and with the lack of draft picks. The Broncos will not be able to get an early-round pick for Williams, due to his performance, but getting draft picks for him would be good.
Can the Broncos sign a top-tier free-agent running back and trade Javonte?