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Jamaal Williams to sign 3-year contract with Saints for $12 million, per report

Free agent RB Jamaal Williams is heading to New Orleans on a three-year deal.

Jamaal Williams #30 of the Detroit Lions runs for yards during a game against the Green Bay Packers at Lambeau Field on January 08, 2023 in Green Bay, Wisconsin. The Lions defeated the Packers 20-16. Photo by Stacy Revere/Getty Images

The New Orleans Saints are bringing in running back Jamaal Williams on a three-year, $12 million deal, per Adam Schefter. The fan favorite Williams spent the last two seasons playing for the Detroit Lions. He has the talent to be a starting running back but excels at goal-line touches.

2022 performance

Williams played in all 17 games last season. He ran the ball 262 times for 1,066 yards with a league-leading 17 touchdowns. If New Orleans has all of their running backs active, Williams is likely going to be the thunder to Alvin Kamara’s lightning. Kamara is dealing with off-the-field legal issues, which should wrap up this summer. Williams could find himself as the starting running back if Kamara misses any time.

Fantasy implications for Lions

Detroit all but said during the legal tampering stage of free agency that they were moving on from Williams. They still have D’Andre Swift under contract and signed David Montgomery away from the Chicago Bears. That is already a packed running back room, leaving no role or room for Williams. We will have to wait to see how Detroit plans to utilize the duo, but for now, I’d lean Monty.

Fantasy implications for Saints

All fantasy value is going to reveal itself with Kamara’s legal situation. If Kamara plays, Williams is going to be touchdown dependent, barring an injury to the starter. If Kamara misses time or deals with injuries, Williams would see his value shoot up for New Orleans. For now, I’d consider Williams around an RB20 because I do think he scores on the goal line several times this coming year.