Keiland Williams will get carries; James Davis will get a chance
Though rookie Keiland Williams is expected to handle the bulk of the load in the Redskins' running game this Sunday, coaches also expect to take a close look at James Davis, who was activated from the practice squad earlier this week.
Davis has just 13 career carries -- including four in Cleveland this season before the Browns released him -- so even coaches aren't sure exactly what they'll get out of him.
"You never know how somebody's going to do until they actually play and get their opportunity," Redskins Coach Mike Shanahan said. "But I like what I've seen in practice. He's handled himself very well, so hopefully he take advantage of his opportunity."
Williams will get his second start of the season on Sunday. Offensive coordinator Kyle Shanahan says the team doesn't alter its game plan from week to week just because a different running back might see the majority of the carries. But, he conceded, there are some differences.
"Some pass plays are different. That's why we play Keiland a little more on third down than some of the other ones," Kyle Shanahan said. "But when it comes to the running plays, we pretty much do the same ones."
Williams is the team's leading scorer on offense with five touchdowns. Coaches like his hands and say his pass-blocking is improving. So they know what they're getting from him. As for Davis, they've had a chance to evaluate him since signing him to the practice squad on Oct. 27, and Davis has had four weeks to try to learn the offense.
"Until you actually see a running back play in a game, you really don't know for sure," Shanahan said. "You see people practice but until they take it to the field and do it in a live situation ... it's really hard to evaluate, at least in my opinion."
Davis could be the player who benefits most from the absence of Clinton Portis, who was placed on injured reserved this week. Shanahan said Portis hasn't yet had his surgery to repair an abdominal tear. He said Portis will have it at some point next week.
| November 26, 2010; 4:01 PM ET
Categories: Keiland Williams
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