Miami Dolphins RB Damien Williams thinks he’s ready to play

Damien Williams is still questionable this week. (AP)

DAVIE—There’s a big difference between the medical staff’s evaluation and whether a player believes he’s good to go.

That’s where things stand with the Dolphins and injured running back Damien Williams at the moment. He’s been out since hurting his shoulder a week ago against New England, and the team doesn’t have a good grasp yet of whether he’ll be able to face the Patriots on Monday.

“It’s kinda getting to a point of how much pain he’s gonna be in and how much range of motion does he have,” coach Adam Gase said. “We’re gonna keep working in the week and wait until closer to game day to figure out where (he is) status-wise… I just don’t know, realistically, what our chances are.”

NFL Network reported the injury as a dislocated shoulder, which would almost certainly mean a multi-week absence for Williams, but Gase has called it day-to-day. Williams never practiced last week and was ruled out of the Denver game by Friday.

When asked if Williams is medically cleared to play, meaning that it’s solely an issue of pain tolerance and functionality of his shoulder, Gase said the team is stepping in to keep Williams from causing further damage.

“If you ask him, he’ll say (he can play),” Gase said. “But I think we’re going to be careful because the last thing we need is something else to happen or he’s not completely ready to go to where he takes one hit and we’re right back where we started.”

Williams is one of Gase’s favorite offensive weapons and he’s averaging 5.1 yards per touch this year.

When Miami traded Jay Ajayi to the Eagles at the end of October, Gase went to a shared backfield of Williams and Kenyan Drake. Williams had 149 yards rushing and 105 receiving with a touchdown in the first four games of that arrangement.

His injury left Miami with Drake, Senorise Perry and recent practice squad callup De’Veon Smith for the Denver game. Drake had 23 carries for 120 yards and a touchdown, as well as three catches for 21 yards, against the Broncos.

[Dolphins TE Julius Thomas explains his unusual touchdown celebration]

[Nice win, Dolphins. Now pay Jarvis Landry.]

[Grading the Dolphins after their 35-9 win against Denver]

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