With any rookies in the NFL, mistakes are bound to happen.
Terrance Williams, the Dallas Cowboys 2013 third-round draft pick from Baylor, suffered his first unfortunate mental lapse during a crucial moment in the fourth quarter in a 30-21 defeat against the San Diego Chargers. With less than three minutes to go in the game, and with the Cowboys driving down the field, William caught a short pass from Tony Romo and while trying to stretch out for more yards, he was stripped of the ball which resulted in a fumble at the Chargers two-yard line. It ultimately cost the Cowboys a chance for a comeback victory.
Despite the mistake from the first-year wideout, Williams was heavily involved in the Cowboys offense due to the absence of Miles Austin, who is currently battling a hamstring injury. Williams hauled in seven receptions on eight targets for 71 receiving yards, and he would have had a touchdown if he did not fumble right in front of the goalline. With the probability of Austin playing this week appearing slim again, as he still has yet to participate in practice, the Cowboys will be counting on Williams to produce in a must-win game against the Denver Broncos. Williams could be heavily targeted against the Broncos and it was apparent Jason Garrett trusts him as he had Williams in on 52 of the team’s 60 offensive plays last week.
Williams is a talented and athletic player who could be the answer for the Cowboys to end the headaches surrounding the constant injuries with the brittle and unreliable Austin. Throughout his career at Baylor, Williams was a vertical red-zone target who could go up and get the ball. In his Senior year, Williams lead the nation with 97 receptions, 1,832 receiving yards and 12 touchdowns. His dynamic speed and ability to easily distance himself against a weak secondary to emerge wide open down the field provides Romo with a great option.
For every rookie, there will be some growing pains and everything they do will be a learning curve. It was obvious Williams was affected by his blunder due to the overwhelming support he received immediately following the incident on the sideline from players and coaches, embracing him with encouraging words. Players hate to be in those types of situations, and to have the spotlight on them for all the wrong reasons. It is a motivating factor for Williams to get back on the field to put his errors behind him and to display why the Cowboys drafted him.
Everything is aligned for Williams to break out this week, and the next step he has to take in order to achieve such heights, is to trust himself.
Ryan Neiman writes for Rant Sports covering Dallas Cowboys Football. You could follow him on Twitter @RyanNAntony or @FantasyUSports.