Ryan Williams has been loomingÂ in the shadows of the Cowboys Practice Squad. Many fans are not even aware he exists. Prior to injury, Ryan Williams set single season records for the Hokies: 1,655 yards and 21 TDs in 2009.
Ryan Williams signed with the Dallas CowboysÂ on May 19, 2014. He began his NFL career with the Arizona Cardinals when he was draftedÂ 38th overall in the 2011 NFL draft. On August 19, 2011 during a pre-season game against the Packers, Williams was injuredÂ early in the third quarter in his first carry of the game. He suffered from a ruptured patella tendon in his right knee and missed the entire 2011 season. Williams was released by the Cardinals on May 12, 2014.
Height|Weight: 5-9Â 207
College: Virgina Tech
NFL Experience: 4 years
Â There has been a lot of speculation as toÂ what the Dallas Cowboys front office is going to do with DeMarco Murray. Now that Joseph Randle has pulled his next irresponsible act of getting caught with marijuana, he has only solidified the fact thatÂ he doesn’t take his NFL career seriously. That being said, Jerry Jones may be in a pickle. Many are wondering if he will draft a RB, sign a free agent like Adrian Peterson, or extend Murray. This is where Ryan Williams may come in to play.
- Ryan Williams appears small in size, but runs bigger. He has had some bad luck with injuries which raises a red flag with me. Stats don’t always tell the right story. Many would say his YPCÂ doesn’t say much, but when I watched the tape his OL left a lot to be desired. Taking that in to consideration, he is a solid RB.
- Ryan Williams has good vision and plays with patience. When the holeÂ isn’t there he does a nice job of cutting back or getting to the edge: turning nothing in to positive yardage. He has good feet and fluid hips. Can run between the tackles or get to the edge. Nose for the endzone and finds a way to get there. Good burst to hit the hole. Solid instincts. Elusive style of running. Makes nice cuts and has excellent change of direction. Very effective catching the ball out of the back field. Runs good routes. Was used as a deep threat at times. Soft hands.
- Ryan Williams may have some durability issues as an every down back, but only time on the field will decide that. Worst case scenario, he would make a nice change of pace back. Needs to improve as a blocker. Doesn’t have eliteÂ straight line speed, but has the ability to make guys miss. Could stand to get stronger. Doesn’t have the power to move a pile.
Overall I liked what I saw from Ryan Williams. I only had access to his college tape so I don’t know what he has improved on since he has been in the NFL. Any player who had 21 rushing TDsÂ in a single season has oodles of potential. In my opinion, if he can stay healthy he is a legitimate weapon in Scott LinehansÂ Arsenal. Until I can get a look at him in the preseason, I am unable to ascertainÂ whether or notÂ he can replace Randle, butÂ based on his college tape, I can see why he was drafted at the top of the 2nd round. I believe if it hadn’t been for his injury in college, he would have been a 1st round pick. I say give the guy some game time. The ceiling is high if he can stay healthy.