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Broncos running back Javonte Williams is taking full advantage of his carry share arrangement with Melvin Gordon.
Williams enters Sunday night’s game at Kansas City with 117 carries (25th in the NFL) for 568 yards (18th), but is tied for sixth among tailbacks in carries of at least 10 yards (20).
Williams’ average of one 10-yard gain per 5.9 rushes is second-best among the group.
The top six: Indianapolis’ Jonathan Taylor (34 10-yard carries/one every 6.1), Cleveland’s Nick Chubb (29/5.2), Minnesota’s Dalvin Cook (26/6.6), San Francisco’s Elijah Mitchell (23/6.2), Cincinnati’s Joe Mixon (21/9.9) and Tennessee’s Derrick Henry (20/10.9).
Williams is the only one of the tailbacks who hasn’t started at least one game. Taylor, Chubb, Cook, Mixon and Henry have started every one of their games and Mitchell has started seven of his eight games.
Surtain honored. Broncos cornerback Pat Surtain II was named AFC Defensive Player of the Week after his two-interception performance in Sunday’s 28-13 win over the Los Angeles Chargers.
“I think it’s a pretty good accomplishment for me and the team,” he said. “It’s always good to have some of those achievements because (the plays) help the team out.”
Surtain intercepted Chargers quarterback Justin Herbert on consecutive fourth-quarter possessions — an underthrown pass to the end zone and a deflected pass he returned for a 70-yard touchdown. He became the first Broncos rookie (and first NFL rookie in six years) to have at least two interceptions and one touchdown in the same game.
Surtain is the fourth Broncos rookie to win the defensive player award, joining linebackers D.J. Williams (2004) and Von Miller (’11) and defensive end Dre’Mont Jones (’19). Thirty Broncos players have won the award a combined 36 times since 1984.
“I was happy for Pat, I thought he deserved it,” coach Vic Fangio said. “He’s been a great pick for us.”
Bolles nears return. Fangio said left tackle Garett Bolles, on the COVID-19/reserve list since Nov. 22, is expected to return to the facility Thursday. Bolles missed the Dallas and Philadelphia games with an ankle injury and the Chargers game with the virus.
“We think (his ankle is) good; we haven’t seen him since he tested positive, but we were planning on him playing (against the Chargers),” Fangio said. “He’s been in the meetings through Zoom and we gave him instructions on his (ankle) rehab. He’s told me on several occasions he’s been working out like crazy and he didn’t get sick at all.”
Not practicing Wednesday were running back Melvin Gordon (ribs/shoulder), tight end Eric Saubert (ankle), left tackle Calvin Anderson (knee), left guard Dalton Risner (back), defensive end Shelby Harris (ankle) and cornerback Ronald Darby.
Fangio said Anderson will be out 2-4 weeks but is optimistic the other players will be available Sunday night.
Cornerback Bryce Callahan (knee) is eligible to return from injured reserve but did not practice.
Footnotes. According to the NFL’s Next Gen Stats, Surtain reached a top speed of 22.07 mph on his interception return, the fastest speed by a defensive player as a ball-carrier in the last five seasons. Herbert’s 16-yard “Hail Mary” touchdown pass to tight end Jared Cook had a completion probability of 8.2%, making it the most improbable completion of the year. … Fangio on playing in prime-time: “Sunday night is the game so the players get amped up for it.”