3 Dec 2020

Home of the NFL Offseason

Why Clyde Edwards-Helaire was valued so highly by the Chiefs

There weren’t too many people who understood why the Chiefs selected Clyde Edwards-Helaire with the 32nd pick in the 2020 NFL Draft. An appearance of LSU insider Blake Ruffino of Are You Serious Sports today on the Bill King Show revealed even deeper ties.

The Kansas City Chiefs surprised a lot of people at the end of the first round of the NFL Draft when they took running back Clyde Edwards-Helaire out of LSU with their first-round pick. I quickly praised the selection on Twitter and took much criticism for it.

No, 2 was not a typo. The pick made a lot of sense immediately to me. Edwards-Helaire is a perfect fit for what the Chiefs want to do with the running back position. He’s a good zone-scheme runner, smart, instinctive, and a very good receiver coming out of the backfield. In a pass-heavy scheme that relies on a heavy dose of an RPO influence, Clyde is a valuable player.

The Chiefs are about to pay their star quarterback, Patrick Mahomes, a lot of money. A fifth-year option with a guy as versatile as Clyde could be the difference between another Super Bowl birth and an early playoff loss, especially if things don’t fall right.

The word on the street in Louisiana

Jan 13, 2020; New Orleans, Louisiana, USA; LSU Tigers running back Clyde Edwards-Helaire (22) is tackled by Clemson Tigers linebacker Isaiah Simmons (11) in the College Football Playoff national championship game at Mercedes-Benz Superdome. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

Blake Ruffino was on top of it leading up to the NFL Draft, reporting for two weeks before the draft that the Chiefs had told Edwards-Helaire that they would take him with the thirty-second pick if he was still on the board. It was common knowledge in Louisiana that Clyde would be coming off of the board in the first round.

Why did the Chiefs value him so much?

According to Ruffino today on the Bill King Show, Edwards-Helaire received a phone call after being drafted from a certain Kansas City Chiefs League MVP and reigning Super Bowl MVP.

“[Mahomes] said ‘Hey, I want you here.’ “

You can listen to the entire segment below:

The powerful statement that it is

This is a very powerful statement and it speaks volumes on how the Chiefs are building their franchise. Everybody knows that Patrick Mahomes is a pretty smart guy. He’s made a living in the NFL doing incredible things with his understanding of the game.

The one weak point on this roster last season was the running back position. The Chiefs played a rotation of guys, due to both injury and scheme, and they were still able to comfortably win a Super Bowl. Imagine how much better this offense can get with a running back like Edwards-Helaire.

Next, Mahomes wanted Edwards-Helaire on the roster. Head coach Andy Reid and general manager Brett Veach both took Mahomes’ word and not only prioritized the player that their quarterback wanted, they carried it out. The relationship between the three key figures of the franchise is clearly very strong, already evident on the sideline and now it’s even clearer with this pick.

This is how you build solidity. This is a good relationship and a strong foundation that NFL franchises dream of having. The Chiefs are there right now. They trust their young quarterback and they get him the pieces that he wants.

The results? 451 regular season points and a 39 point-per-game average through the NFL Playoffs on the way to a Super Bowl victory.

Imagine what that might look like this year.

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