With Beanie Wells Gone, Expectations High For Arizona Cardinals RB Ryan Williams in 2013

(Jennifer Stewart/USA Today Sports)

Last season, the Arizona Cardinals ranked last in the NFL when it came to rushing yards per game (75.2 rushing yards per game) and when a team’s leading rusher is LaRod Stephens-Howling with 356 rushing yards–it should really come as no surprise. One of the main reasons why the Cardinals have struggled in the ground game over the last couple of years is because Beanie Wells has failed to live up to the hype as the former first-round pick was recently released by Arizona.

With Wells out of the picture, the Cardinals will most likely rely on Ryan Williams in the ground game, but whether or not he can handle the load at running back will be a different story. There were high expectations for Williams when Arizona selected him in the 2011 NFL Draft, but he missed his entire rookie season and only appeared in five games last season due to injuries.

As long as he can remain healthy–Williams could be in for a big year with the Cardinals in 2013.

The fact that Williams rushed for 1,655 yards and 21 touchdowns during his first season with Virginia Tech back in 2009 shows just how dangerous he can be at running back. Arizona has been patiently waiting to use Williams more in the ground game over the last couple of years and there’s no reason why he shouldn’t be considered a breakout star to keep an eye on in 2013.

Well is finally out of the picture–so it’s time for Williams to shine and help Arizona bounce back from a disappointing five-win season in 2012.

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