LOS ANGELES — With the trade of veteran Cam Akers the Rams have a new starting running back, Kyren Williams.
Williams, the Rams 2022 fifth round pick out of Notre Dame who played sparingly last season during his rookie year will be the featured back in the Rams offense going forward.
After sharing the backfield with Akers in Week 1 and outperforming him. Coach Sean McVay gave Williams the starting nod in Week 2.
“He’s a complete back. He’s got the ability to play on all downs,” said McVay. “He’s really put the work in, he’s earned a lot of trust from his coaches, from his teammates and he’s a guy that just continues to take steps in the right direction.”
Williams who performed well in the Rams upset win over the Seattle Seahawks, rushing 15 times for 52 yards and two touchdowns. Compared to the 22 carries for 29 yards and a touchdown for Akers in Week 1. The former Notre Dame star followed up his season opening performance with 20 touches for a total of 100 yards (rushing & receiving) adding two touchdowns proving his coach made the right call against the San Francisco 49ers.
After the first two weeks, Williams’ rushing grade of 79.7 from Pro Football Focus ranks eighth among all qualified running backs, forcing four missed tackles and gaining 77 yards after contact.
“Every single detail matters to him,” said quarterback Matthew Stafford. “Lots of times, we get to the end of a play call, I’m tagging the back’s route or something and he’s already on it, knowing exactly what he’s got.”
Even after his struggles last year Williams has always felt he was ready for this moment and wants to show the Rams that they made the right choice believing in him.
“I think it’s just in me. I love football. I love it to its core, I love everything about it,” said Williams. “Every day, [I’m] chasing improvement and trying to find how I can be better for myself, literally. So if that’s being in the film room watching film for two hours, I’ll go do that. It doesn’t matter to me because there’s not much more that I want than this football stuff.”
We all know who Puka Nacua is because of his early season performance but we can’t over look Williams and the impact he has on this team’s success.
Let’s see if Williams can make some plays and be a big difference maker as the Rams try to defeat the Cincinnati Bengals on Monday night in the rematch of Super Bowl LVI.