The depth in the Falcons’ running game will be tested somewhat over the next several weeks. The team announced on Saturday that Damien Williams has been placed on IR due to a rib injury, meaning that he will miss at least the next four games.
Williams, 30, spent the first four years of his career in Miami. He operated strictly as a rotational rusher and special teamer, never registering a start. A much more productive, two-year stint in Kansas City followed, where he racked up over 1,100 scrimmage yards and 13 total touchdowns. The former UDFA put up less impressive numbers last season with the Bears.
As a free agent, Williams signed a one-year deal with the Falcons, whose front office now includes ex-Bears GM Ryan Pace. That provided the team with an experienced back to make up for the departure of Mike Davis, following his release. In his Falcons debut last week against the Saints, Williams received just a pair of carries and totaled two yards.
Atlanta will be able to move forward with Cordarrelle Patterson as their lead back in Williams’ absence, of course, but they will now exclusively rely on inexperienced options below him on the depth chart. 2021 fifth-rounder Avery Williams, as well as rookies Tyler Allgeier and practice squad elevation Caleb Huntley will operate as Patterson’s backups on Sunday.
With 120 rushing yards and a touchdown in the team’s season opener, Patterson may not need much in the way of support when the Falcons visit the Rams, or for the next several contests after that. If he does, though, the team will be missing one of its more experienced offensive contributors.