Can Packers RB Dexter Williams make a push for carries in 2019?

Green Bay Packers rookie running back Dexter Williams is a great sleeper candidate entering the 2019 NFL season.

The Green Bay Packers will be one of the more fun teams to watch in 2019 because a lot has changed since they last took the field. Most notably, the dynamic between QB Aaron Rodgers and new coach Matt LaFleur has the potential to be a great match or a combustible disaster.

One of the ways Rodgers and LaFleur can get off to a good start is by developing good offensive chemistry and a better balance between the run and pass. In order to do so, one of Green Bay’s young running backs has to separate from the pack and become the bell cow.

The favorite to be that guy is Aaron Jones, who despite limited opportunities through his first two seasons in the NFL has proven to be a productive option. He’s averaged 5.5 yards per carry in both seasons, including 2018 when he ran the ball 133 times. He finished the year with 728 yards and eight touchdowns in just eight starts. He has the potential to become one of the best running backs in the NFC.

That said, Jones hasn’t proven to be the most reliable option. Whether it’s suspension or injury, his talent has been limited by his availability. And if that happens again in 2019, there may be a rookie waiting to take his job.

The Packers drafted Notre Dame’s Dexter Williams in the sixth round of the 2019 NFL draft, a pick that represented good value for a player who entered the draft process as a highly regarded runner. Some analysts had him pegged for Day 2.

Williams is a big back with good speed and explosiveness, and according to Green Bay’s running backs coach, is a perfect fit for what they want to do on offense.

“The one good thing about him is, he’s got the ability to make explosive cuts, but he’s got really good acceleration. He can hit his top speed pretty fast,” Sirmans said during the offseason workout program. “He should be built for this scheme because he can make explosive cuts and he can accelerate through the hole.”

Sixth-round picks generally have a tough road to playing time. In fact, a roster spot isn’t guaranteed for guys selected that late. But Williams is in a great position to seize an opportunity that could present itself at some point this summer, if not early in the season. And if he does, he could end up being a gigantic steal for the Packers.