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Javonte Williams or Melvin Gordon? Broncos intend to roll with the hot hand

Chris Simms and Mike Florio look ahead to kickoff for the 2022-23 NFL season as Russell Wilson makes his debut for the Broncos against his former team in Seattle.

The Broncos don’t have a bell cow running back. In any given game, they could.

Asked by reporters on Friday how he plans to split the workload between running backs Javonte Williams and Melvin Gordon (pictured), Denver coach Nathaniel Hackett gave an answer that will drive some fantasy-football players crazy.

“You can’t really say,” Hackett said. “I’ve always been a true believer in you always want to roll with the hot hand. One guy gets going, and you want to be sure you keep feeding that person. I think they’re going to be great complements to each other. I think that if both of them are hot, and you have to keep feeding them. It goes for the wide receivers, too. If one guy gets going, you have to give him the ball. As we’re saying, if anybody gets hot you have to continually feed them. It’s going to be different every game, I imagine.”

Hackett was asked to describe the skillsets of Williams and Gordon.

“I think we’re in a really good place with those two guys,” Hackett said. “Both of those guys can do so much. They can run inside and outside gap schemes. They can catch the ball from the backfield. They can both protect, which is huge. I think that having two guys like that, and then you throw [Mike] Boone in there and his ability to run. We saw a couple of good runs that he had the last game we played. He did some great things out of the backfield also catching the ball. We have three good ones there and we’re excited to give them the ball.”

In the end, there’s only one ball. And Russell Wilson will surely be throwing it down the field a good bit. It’ll be interesting to see how much the Broncos run and, when they do, which guy gets it.

Last year, Williams and Gordon split the carries right down the middle, with 203 each. In three nights, we’ll get the first glimpse of how Hackett will use them.