Monday, October 18, 2021

Chiefs seek balance with Edwards-Helaire unavailable

KANZAS CITY, Missouri (NWN) – When the Kansas City Chiefs finally began their ground play, they had to watch anxiously from the sideline Sunday night as Tyrick Hill helped carry the running Clyde Edwards-Heler off the field from behind. knee injury. …

It turned out to be a knee sprain that put Edwards-Heler on the reserve injured list 48 hours later.

Now the trick for bosses is not to return to the open-minded approach that has sometimes stagnated their attack. They are at their best when they can start their ground game, and Darrell Williams and Jeric McKinnon will have to provide much-needed balance when they travel to Washington on Sunday.

“We have great players. We also added (Derrick) Gore – he was productive in the preseason, ”said Chiefs coach Andy Reed. “We trust two other guys, especially Darrell. How many years has he been productive? “

The answer is four, of which 39 games are in the form of chiefs. But the former undrafted free agent from LSU still hasn’t had the opportunity to start a career in the NFL, and Williams knows this is an important opportunity for him in several ways.

He wants to prove to all skeptics that he can do it. And he wants to help Kansas City get back on track after losing three of their last four games and finishing last in AFC West, a division that the Chiefs have dominated for years.

“I’ve worked my whole life to become the starting player for the league. I finally got this chance, finally got this opportunity, and I just have to make the most of it, ”Williams said. “Come here every day with the desire to work and contribute to the work.”

Edwards-Heler left some large spikes for filling. He played 100-yard games in a row and scored through the air in each of his two previous games before injuring a knee against the Bill. But the reality is that Williams was unable even before Edwards-Heler came along, averaging about 4 yards per carry over his career.

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This included a Super Bowl job in February when Edwards-Heler dealt with a high ankle sprain.

He landed 29 times for 99 yards this season and landed twice. And while McKinnon is known for his off-field agility, Williams has seven catches on 45 yards in limited space.

Speaking of McKinnon, he will also have a better chance after signing with the Chiefs at a free agency. McKinnon started 18 games in Minnesota and four in San Francisco, and he played 79 games in six seasons in the league.

“They’ve done it before,” said senior defender Patrick Mahomes. “Darrell has had great success throughout his career here, filling it in and working hard. Jeric was a guy who played in all sorts of places, and I believe he will play here too. “

It would be nice if one of them was the Chiefs’ top rusher this weekend. Mahomes had that dubious difference from the Bills when he was thrown out of his pocket so much that he ended up with a 61 yard jerk.

The importance of offensive balance can be boiled down to two very different games this season. Against the Ravens, the Chiefs threw 343 yards and ran 67 in 36-35 shootouts. Against the Eagles, when the Chiefs threw 271 and ran for 200, they set a season record of 42-30 in Philadelphia.

“For us, we try to score every time we touch a soccer ball,” Mahomes said. “This is how my whole career went. This was a precedent set before I came here. When we have the opportunity to succeed and be successful, we must capitalize on it. ”

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