Fantasy Alert: Clyde Edwards-Helaire 'To Have a Big Year,' Says Chiefs GM

Rob Goldberg@TheRobGoldbergFeatured ColumnistAugust 24, 2020

Kansas City Chiefs running back Clyde Edwards-Helaire runs the ball during an NFL football training camp Friday, Aug. 14, 2020, in Kansas City, Mo. (AP Photo/Charlie Riedel)
Charlie Riedel/Associated Press

If you weren't already prioritizing Clyde Edwards-Helaire in fantasy drafts, you better start now.

Kansas City Chiefs general manager Brett Veach acknowledged the rookie running back will have a significant role in the offense.

"He's on pace to have a big year, to be our primary ball-carrier," Veach told Peter King of NBC Sports.

King noted Edwards-Helaire is working with the first team in practice and has gotten a heavy dose of action on 11-on-11 drills, used as both a runner and receiver.

The Chiefs surprised many by using their first-round pick on Edwards-Helaire, making him the first running back off the board at No. 32 overall. It gave arguably the most dangerous offense in the NFL another elite weapon.

With Damien Williams opting out of the 2020 season, the rookie became even more valuable as a potential centerpiece of the rushing attack. (Patrick Mahomes is the top returning rusher for Kansas City after totaling 218 rushing yards in 2019.)

It provides an excellent opportunity for Edwards-Helaire, considering what full-time running backs have done in this system. Kareem Hunt totaled 1,782 yards from scrimmage and 11 touchdowns as a rookie, following it up with 1,202 yards and 14 touchdowns in just 11 games in Year 2.

Williams had trouble staying healthy last year, but he and LeSean McCoy combined for 1,357 yards and 12 scores in 2019. Williams has also excelled in the playoffs as a featured back, totaling 10 touchdowns in five games over the last two seasons.

Edwards-Helaire can be even better considering his skill set. He finished last season at LSU with 1,414 rushing yards on 6.6 yards per carry, adding 453 receiving yards on 55 catches. And though much of the focus was on quarterback Joe Burrow, Edwards-Helaire put together an outstanding season.

He can have the same role alongside Mahomes in 2020, making him a legitimate contender to be the top-scoring running back in fantasy football. He should be taken in the first round and probably within the first five picks.