The Arizona Cardinals are officially moving on towards a months-long stretch without star running back David Johnson. With the premier tailback expected to miss anywhere from two-to-three months after undergoing surgery on his wrist following Sunday’s Week 1 matchup against the Detroit Lions, coach Bruce Arians has named the team’s new starter.
Fourth-year running back Kerwynn Williams will assume the starting role, followed by Andre Ellington and Chris Johnson on the team’s depth chart.
Williams, a former seventh-round draft pick of the Indianapolis Colts in 2013, saw five carries for 10 yards in Sunday’s loss to the Lions. He also caught one pass for two yards. Williams has never started an NFL game in his four seasons in the league, having only appeared in 22 contests with the the Cardinals. He’s spent time with the Colts, as well as the Chargers, featured mostly on their practice squads. He has a total of 103 carries for 555 yards and four touchdowns.
Ellington has had a more substantial history with the Arizona franchise, playing in a total of 54 games since being selected by the team in the sixth round of the 2013 draft. He’s carried the ball 398 times for 1,697 yards and nine touchdowns. He didn’t notch a carry on Sunday, but did catch two balls for 35 yards.
Previously seen as one of the more dangerous weapons out of the backfield several years back, Chris Johnson returns to the Cardinals just 11 days after being released by the franchise on Sept. 1. He signed a one-year deal with the organization on July 20, the third straight season in which he signed a one-year deal to play for the Cardinals.