With the 32nd pick in the 2020 NFL Draft, the Chiefs select LSU running back Clyde Edwards-Helaire

Clyde Edwards-Helaire Career Statistics

YearAgeRuAttTm%RuYdTeam %RuTDRecReYdReTDYd/Tch

No back raised their draft stock more in 2019 than Edwards-Helaire. As a freshman, Edwards-Helaire was stuck behind Derrius Guice and Darrel Williams, but then as a sophomore, played second in line behind undrafted back Nick Brossette. After 169 touches for 831 total yards through two seasons, many expected freshman John Emery to step in and lead the LSU backfield, but Edwards-Helaire exploded for 1,867 yards on 270 touches and 17 touchdowns. 

While Edwards-Helaire benefitted from playing in the highest-scoring offense in the country, he also was hyper-efficient on his own merit. For context, he handled 56.7% of the LSU non-QB rushing attempts, yet produced 65.2% of their rushing yardage. That +8.5% gap in yardage versus usage was tops among all D1 backs in this class. His +2.0 yards per carry compared to his non-QB teammates was also first in this class.

New passing game coordinator Joe Brady unlocked Edwards-Helaire in the passing game in 2019, with CEH running 21% of his routes split out in the formation. Edwards-Helaire led all backs in this class with 3.7 receptions per game in 2019 and has the fourth-most return yards (877) for backs in this class over their careers. 

Kansas City picked up the 2020 option on Damien Williams this offseason, but the only back the Chiefs had signed beyond the upcoming season is Darwin Thompson, last year’s sixth round pick. Williams had just 711 yards in 11 games in 2019, but once again flashed what a diverse, lead back could do in this offense. Over his final seven full games played, Williams played 77% of the snaps, handled 82% of the backfield touches, and averaged 110.4 yards from scrimmage per game. 

Edwards-Helaire easily gets the biggest bump from pre-draft rankings among the rookie players selected in Round 1 and immediately has potential to be a top-20 back with upside for a larger outcome out of the box to go along with top-15 dynasty value.