General manager Tom Telesco believes Williams has the ability to handle a high-volume role if needed, Ricky Henne of the team's official website reports. "[Williams] had a great year for us," Telesco said Thursday. "But we're also in an offense where we have a lot of guys to get the football to, so he didn't have 80, 90 or 100 catches, but he has that type of ability."
The seventh overall pick from the 2017 NFL Draft enjoyed a breakout of sorts during his second pro season, parlaying 66 targets into a 43-664-10 receiving line (10.1 YPT, 15.4 YPR) in an offense that gave most of the volume to its running backs and Keenan Allen. Williams should get more chances in 2019 with Tyrell Williams expected to find a new home this offseason, but the Chargers also will need to find targets for tight end Hunter Henry, who returned from a torn ACL to play 14 snaps in a playoff loss to New England. As much as he's deserving of additional opportunities, it's hard to see how the 24-year-old wideout would draw more than five or six targets per game unless Allen were to miss significant time with an injury.
The target total led the way for the Chargers and represented a career high for Williams, who has frequently ranked behind top wideout Keenan Allen in looks throughout his sophomore season. Considering the Chargers trailed by four touchdowns at halftime, the team's passing numbers were more inflated than normal, but Williams' 21.5 percent target share was still sizable even after accounting for game flow. After tallying 10 touchdowns during the regular season and seeing his role grow in the postseason, Williams looks to be on an upward trajectory as the 2019 campaign approaches.
Williams ended up pacing the Chargers in receiving yardage with his modest total, and he logged the longest catch of the day for the team with a 28-yard grab in the second half. He then found himself wide-open in the left corner of the end zone on a two-point conversion play after Melvin Gordon's early fourth-quarter one-yard run. The second-year wideout finished the regular season on a strong note with three touchdowns over the last three games, as well 76- and 65-yard efforts in Weeks 15 and 17, respectively. Now having gotten a taste of some postseason success, Williams will look to take his contributions up a notch versus the Patriots in next Sunday's divisional-round matchup.
Williams hauled in five of six targets for 65 yards and a touchdown in Sunday's 23-9 win over the Broncos. He also lost 11 yards on his lone rushing attempt.
WIlliams found himself open in the middle of the end zone for a three-yard score to give his team a 14-3 lead in the third quarter. The Clemson product closed out the regular season with two of his three biggest games of the year in terms of receptions, producing five and seven-catch efforts with three touchdowns over his final three contests. Unfortunately for him, he sandwiched those games with a one-catch dud against the Ravens in Week 16, and now he must face them again on the road in the first round of the playoffs.
Williams caught one of his three targets for seven yards in the loss Saturday to the Ravens.
A stifling Ravens' defense forced Williams to see his fewest targets since Week 13, culminating in his lowest yardage total since Week 6. It's a far cry from his heroic performance last week against the Chiefs, and a reminder that Williams' fantasy production is largely dependent on game script, as Keenan Allen and Melvin Gordon continue to dominate the touches on a week-to-week basis.
|2017||Los Angeles Chargers||10||1||11||95||8.6||20||0||1||0||7|
|2018||Los Angeles Chargers||16||5||43||664||15.4||55||10||11||2||36|
|2017||Los Angeles Chargers||10||1||0||0||---||0||0||0||0|
|2018||Los Angeles Chargers||16||5||7||28||4.0||19||1||0||2|
|2017||Los Angeles Chargers||10||1||1.0||0||0||0||0||0.0||0||0||0|
|2018||Los Angeles Chargers||16||3||3.0||0||0||0||0||0.0||0||0||0|