The Los Angeles Rams lost both of their top two running backs to injury on Sunday against the Arizona Cardinals. Backup running back Ronnie Rivers has already been placed on injured reserve with a Grade 3 PCL sprain, but starter Kyren Williams — an ankle sprain — has a less clear status, according to Sean McVay.
Immediately following the injury, the reports were that Williams may only need to miss one week. That would be this Sunday against the Pittsburgh Steelers, a stout run defense. The Rams have already brought in reinforcements for this week, including Myles Gaskin, Royce Freeman and Darrell Henderson, along with Zach Evans.
But there is now a chance that Williams may need to miss more than one week. McVay was unsure of anything regarding Williams’ status beyond the fact that he won’t be playing in Week 7.
“We are discussing the plans as it relates to Kyren, but it’s safe to say he will be ruled out for this week.”
McVay had said that Williams appeared to be fine after Week 6’s victory against the Cardinals. He spoke about why he thought that and what has happened in the days since.
“He was walking around. It shows you what a tough dude he is. He’s walking around, had the adrenaline, the way that his immediate checkup went right afterwards were not in alignment with what some of the scans ended up revealing with the severity of the ankle sprain. It’s unfortunate, but he’s a fast healer he says and he’s a resilient guy. He’s done an outstanding job through the first six weeks of the season, and we’ll look forward to getting him back whenever that is dependent upon exactly how we approach whether it ends up being IR or just a couple weeks.”
The Rams head coach revealed that a multi-week absence and an IR stint have both been discussed, saying that there is a possibility that either one happens. However, nothing has been officially determined beyond this week’s game.
Reportedly, the expectation privately is that Williams is expected to miss several weeks, according to Jeremy Fowler of ESPN:
#Rams RB Kyren Williams is expected to miss multiple games but should be back, at the latest, after the Week 10 bye, per source. Williams suffered an ankle sprain on Sunday.
— Jeremy Fowler (@JFowlerESPN) October 18, 2023
The Rams are obviously hopeful that their talented starter is back as quickly as possible, but his long-term health is paramount, especially if the Rams do plan on making a push for the postseason this year.
Williams made sure he was ready when number was called
This injury comes after Williams’ best performance of his career, taking 20 carries for 158 yards and a touchdown against the Cardinals. He knew the game plan may be shifting his way after a pass-heavy first half, and he ensured that he was ready when his number was called.