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‘Optimism’ around Mike Williams after Chargers receiver leaves practice with shoulder injury

Mike Williams, Chargers

Los Angeles Chargers wide receiver Mike Williams departed Sunday’s practice early due to a shoulder injury, one that Ian Rapoport of the NFL Network is reporting that there is optimism of not being serious.

Williams will undergo further tests, but his collarbone was not injured, which could have a potentially debilitating ailment with the start of the season just three weeks away.

Williams led the NFL last season with an average of 20.4 yards per reception. He amassed over 1,000 receiving yards for the first time in his career despite making just 49 catches, two of which he took into the end zone. His 54.4 catch percentage was far below where he sat in 2018, but he remains a key piece of the puzzle for the Chargers heading into 2020, looking to blossom into his first-round draft pick potential.

The duo of Keenan Allen and Williams figures to be one of the premier 1-2 combos in the NFL this season. They’ll be especially imperative as Tyrod Taylor takes the reins at quarterback with rookie Justin Herbert waiting in the wings. Injury concerns around Williams expose just how thin Los Angeles is at wideout outside of their top two targets with Jalen Guyton, Joe Reed, K.J.Hill, and Darius Jennings serving as the back-ups that could see an expanded role should Williams miss time.

With there being no preseason games due to COVID-19, Williams won’t have to worry about missing in-game action in the short term. The Chargers are set to open the 2020 season Sept. 13 on the road against the Cincinnati Bengals.