Contact Form

    News Details

    Rams in a RB pinch after injuries to Kyren Williams, Ronnie Rivers
    • October 19, 2023

    THOUSAND OAKS — Just as the Rams seemed to have unlocked their running game, bad news came in two parts on Wednesday.

    Backup Ronnie Rivers was placed on injured reserve with a knee injury, sidelining him for a minimum of four games. Not great for the Rams’ depth, but not calamitous in a vacuum.

    But it was paired with the news that starter Kyren Williams, coming off a career-high 158-yard performance in Sunday’s victory over Arizona, will miss this coming weekend’s matchup against the Pittsburgh Steelers with a sprained left ankle.

    Williams’ return timeline is unknown, with Coach Sean McVay stating that an IR trip remains a consideration. At practice Wednesday, Williams had a cast up to his knee on his left leg and was moving around on a scooter.

    After Sunday’s win, McVay confidently said that Williams would not miss any time, but further tests revealed the extent of his injury.

    “It shows you what a tough dude he is,” McVay said. “He was walking around, had the adrenaline. The way that his immediate checkup went right afterwards were not in alignment with what 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.”

    In the meantime, the Rams made moves to make up for the dearth of running back depth. They signed Royce Freeman from the practice squad to the active roster, signed Myles Gaskin to the active roster and added Darrell Henderson to the practice squad.

    Gaskin is a new entity for the Rams, but Henderson was a third-round pick by the franchise in 2019 and rushed 70 times for 283 yards in 2022 before being a mid-season cut. McVay said Henderson’s familiarity played a big role in his addition.

    “I’ve always really loved working with Darrell. Smart, conscientious,” McVay said. “When he’s played, he’s been really productive. … He has an understanding, and a nuanced understanding, of what we’re doing.”

    But, on the outside looking in, the logical candidate to take over the majority of the backfield work is rookie Zach Evans.

    Evans, a sixth-round pick out of Mississippi, rushed four times for 10 yards in the fourth quarter against the Cardinals after Williams and Rivers left the game. But McVay did not commit to him as the starter this coming weekend.

    “We’ve got the week to be able to evaluate and I would say all four of those guys are possibilities and we’re truly navigating through that,” McVay said. “But I was pleased with what Zach did toward the latter part of the game.”

    Right tackle Rob Havenstein spoke on Monday about how hard Evans has worked in practices, saying that McVay singled him out for his work with the scout team and told him he’d be ready when he got his shot.

    Related Articles

    Los Angeles Rams |

    Rams still awaiting clarity on Derion Kendrick arrest

    Los Angeles Rams |

    Rams to increase season ticket prices for first time since move to SoFi Stadium

    Los Angeles Rams |

    Rams gathering information following Derion Kendrick arrest

    Los Angeles Rams |

    Swanson: Rams do what’s expected in victory against Arizona Cardinals

    Los Angeles Rams |

    Rams, Kyren Williams rediscover rushing attack in win over Cardinals

    McVay remembered it was offensive coordinator Mike LaFleur who gave that vote of confidence, but he seconded the sentiments.

    “I certainly have seen the same things,” McVay said. “Whether it be scout team or being locked in in the walk-throughs, just being intentional about getting better. How do I approach my craft every single day, whether it be running our plays or running the opposing team’s plays?”

    As for this week, Evans isn’t trying to change his approach even with the possibility of an increased role in front of him.

    “I’m approaching it the same way I do every week, just being whatever the team needs me to be,” Evans said. “Just keep preparing every day like I can.”

    ​ Orange County Register