1. RB Jamaal Williams
With D’Andre Swift missing three games and having his workload managed carefully since returning to action, Williams has become the Lions’ clear-cut lead back. He’s leading the league with 12 rushing touchdowns this season, including five games with two or more scores.
Beyond his production this season, as he has already reached career highs in rushing yards (668) and carries (159), Williams is a veteran leader for a young Lions team. After scoring three touchdowns against the Giants, as he advanced himself in Lions history, he was hesitant to take on praise.
Via ESPN’s Eric Woodyard:
"It’s a good milestone. I’m not very good with compliments. I really don’t know what to say. I just say, ‘thank you’ and keep it pushing. It never gets to my head because I know I still have a lot more to prove,” Williams said. “So, I’m just trying to do my best. I’m grateful for these because it’s not just me. This goes for the linemen, too. My touchdowns are their touchdowns. Everybody who blocks for me does everything.”"
Williams will be a free agent after the season, and for what it’s worth he has said he wants to stay.
"I want to be here,” he said. “It’s a great team. I see the possibilities and the positive energy in here. So if I can be here, I’ll be here. If I can’t, it’s just the way of the universe. I’m happy wherever I go and I’m just gonna be me, but I know what I bring to the team and hopefully I’m here for it.”"
With Swift underachieving the way he has this season, Lions fans should be most thankful that Williams has stepped up like he has.