The Denver Broncos held out multiple players during their preseason opener vs. the Arizona Cardinals including running back Javonte Williams. However, that will change this weekend as head coach Sean Payton has announced that Javonte Williams will play in week two of the preseason vs. the San Francisco 49ers.
HC Sean Payton confirms RB Javonte Williams will play against the 49ers.— Aric DiLalla (@AricDiLalla) August 15, 2023
Said he doesn’t yet know how many snaps he’ll get and noted the Broncos will be smart with him.
Payton noted that they do not know how many snaps he will play yet but they will continue to be smart with him.
As we know, Williams tore multiple ligaments early in the 2022 season vs. the Las Vegas Raiders and was facing a long rehab process that left his future in question. Many assumed he would not be back for the regular season and may need to start the season on the PUP and may never be 100% at all this season. Well, Javonte laughed at the 12 to 18-month timetable and was back on the field for the start of OTA’s. He continued to practice throughout the OTA’s and minicamp without any setbacks and even avoided the PUP list to start camp. Since then, Javonte has been a constant participator in camp and looks to be close to or near 100%.
This next hurdle for Javonte may be his biggest yet. He has proven he can run, cut, be explosive, and everything else in practice, but has yet to be tackled in live action since his injury. The mental side of these injuries is sometimes the toughest part and Williams plays a physical position and is a violent runner. He will need to have trust in his knee to hold up through the contact and prove he can be the same physical and violent runner that he was before the injury.
He has proved all the doubters wrong so far and has done so without any setbacks so I feel cautiously optimistic about him being able to play in this game without any issues. Getting this final hurdle completed before the start of the regular season will be big for him and allow him to be fully focused for week one vs. the Raiders.