There’s plenty of optimism about Jameson Williams making a fast return from his torn ACL, but Lions offensive coordinator Ben Johnson has offered a dose of reality.
The Detroit Lions made their bold move in the first round of April’s draft, trading up to No. 12 overall to take wide receiver Jameson Williams. If not for a torn ACL in the national title game back in January, he might have been the first receiver drafted–and as it was he was fourth and a top-12 pick.
Williams quickly set a goal to be ready for training camp, and his surgeon offered an optimistic outlook for a fast recovery. But all that optimism does not mean he’ll be fully ready to go for Week 1, with somewhere around the first 4-6 weeks of the season an easy target for his debut.
Lions offensive coordinator Ben Johnson offers dose of reality on Jameson Williams
Lions offensive coordinator Ben Johnson was among the coaches to speak from OTAs on Thursday. He noted the challenge it’ll be to get Williams integrated into the offense.
It’s going to be a challenge cause you can’t really compare it to the Josh Reynolds situation from last year, which I would love to do because he came in late and he had to learn, and we didn’t really know him and what he necessarily did best,” Johnson said. “But at least there was a comfort level between him and the quarterback, and we don’t have that.”
That’s a real struggle for us is to get him back, to get him healthy, and then (get him) as many reps as possible with the quarterbacks so that we know exactly where he’s going to be, we can anticipate the throw,” “That’s the one thing that (Goff had) naturally with Josh coming from their days in L.A., so yeah, it may take a little bit of time.
Williams is a potential candidate to start the season on the PUP list. That would cost him at least the first six games of the season, and keep him from practicing with the team until October.
The PUP list and missing at least six games is among the worst-case scenarios for Williams to start his rookie season. Somewhere between Week 1 and that is the bullseye for his being able to suit up, with the questions then becoming how much he’ll play right off the bat and how effective he’ll be right away.