AP Photo/Kevork Djansezian
Jamaal Williams is the Detroit Lions’ lead back for the time being after D’Andre Swift was ruled out for the remainder of Thursday’s game against the Chicago Bears with a shoulder injury.
Swift went down during the first half when Bears linebacker Roquan Smith tackled him hard along the sidelines. He had no rushing yards on three carries and three receptions for nine yards before exiting and was replaced by Williams.
Williams signed a two-year contract with the Lions this offseason to act as a backup for Swift. Entering Thursday’s game, he had compiled 323 yards and two touchdowns on the ground, as well 16 catches for 99 yards in eight games this season.
Although he primarily played second fiddle to Aaron Jones during the first four seasons of his NFL career with the Green Bay Packers, Williams was an effective player with at least 674 yards from scrimmage in each of his campaigns in Green Bay.
Never much of an explosive runner or elite pass catcher, Williams will be in RB2 territory if Swift misses additional time beyond this week with the shoulder injury.
Williams could be limited by Detroit’s low-end offense, but he will undoubtedly get the bulk of the work and have value in point-per-reception leagues since quarterback Jared Goff likes to dump the ball off to his running backs.
Godwin Igwebuike and rookie seventh-round pick Jermar Jefferson should also see more action if Swift lands on the shelf.