The New Orleans Saints have reportedly added more firepower to their running backs room as former Detroit Lions player Jamaal Williams is heading south on a three-year deal.
Williams was the NFL’s rushing touchdown leader last season, finding the colored paint 17 times for the Lions while blowing past his career high, which was four while with the Green Bay Packers.
He also set a career high with 1,066 yards rushing on 262 attempts for Detroit.
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Williams’ hard-nosed style of running will try to complement Saints’ Pro Bowl running back Alvin Kamara, who should still be the team’s leading back despite the addition of Williams.
Kamara had 897 yards rushing and 490 yards receiving but only four total touchdowns on the year over 15 games.
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Being that Williams had only nine starts in his 17 games last season, he is used to sharing touches. The Lions sported D’Andre Swift in their backfield as well, so Williams simply gave it his all when it was his turn to carry the ball.
He was also in that role coming into the NFL as a fourth-round pick out of BYU by the Packers, when he backed up Aaron Jones for four seasons.
With the NFC South wide open, the Saints have been making some big moves to upgrade both sides of the ball. On offense, Williams and Kamara will be working with Derek Carr at quarterback after his release from the Las Vegas Raiders. Wide receiver Michael Thomas also agreed to return to New Orleans, who hopes he can stay healthy this season alongside rookie standout Chris Olave.
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Head coach in Dennis Allen will certainly look to make sure everyone is on the same page by Week 1, and Williams could help with that. As NFL fans watched on HBO’s “Hard Knocks,” Williams is a natural, passionate leader in the locker room and is very respected by teammates and coaches alike.
He was even seen shedding tears while giving a team speech during training camp.
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New Orleans is hoping Williams brings that fire and his production from last season to a group that averaged 116.6 rushing yards per game.