With the 164th pick in the 2022 NFL Draft, the Los Angeles Rams selected running back Kyren Williams out of Notre Dame. Williams is a St. Louis native and a lifelong Rams fan who has long looked up to Steven Jackson.
Williams entered his 2021 season as one of the top running back draft prospects in the nation, but he didn’t quite have the year expected of him and he tested poorly at the NFL Scouting Combine. Williams is 5’9, 194 lbs, and his 28.6” arms are the shortest of any running back in this class, as his his sub-70” wingspan.
He ran a 4.65 in the 40-yard dash, which was also the slowest of any running back in the draft this year, but his 1.57 10-yard split was reasonably fine.
For some, Williams will be one of the steals of day three because he was a highly-ranked recruit in 2019 (24th among running backs), went to Notre Dame, and was productive over the last two seasons but rushing for over 1,000 yards in both seasons. Brugler calls him a “competitor with the darting quickness and pass-catching skills to be a third-down weapon” and a complementary piece in any backfield. That’s what he’ll do in L.A., as a potential number two back to replace Darrell Henderson in 2023.
For now, Cam Akers’ job is plenty safe to start the season, but Kyren Williams does have the ceiling of a valuable NFL running back and not just as a gadget.