Clyde Edwards-Helaire

Clyde Edwards-Helaire Out For Rest Of Regular Season

Chiefs rookie running back Clyde Edwards-Helaire, who has enjoyed a strong first season in the pros operating as the starting running back for the 13-1 defending champions, is out for the rest of the regular season, as Ian Rapoport of NFL.com reports (via Twitter). The No. 32 overall pick of this year’s draft suffered a hip and ankle injury in Sunday’s victory over the Saints.

X-rays came back negative, but CEH will miss Kansas City’s final two games of the regular season. Rapoport says in a separate tweet that the running back will have a shot at returning for the postseason, but it doesn’t sound like a sure thing.

The good news is that the Chiefs likely won’t need Edwards-Helaire for the next few weeks anyway. The club is all but certain to secure the AFC’s lone first-round bye, so CEH will have about a month to heal up before the divisional round of the playoffs. In 13 games (all starts) this season, the former LSU standout has 181 carries for 803 yards (4.4 YPC) and four TDs. He’s added 36 catches for 297 yards and a score through the air.

Le’Veon Bell will get the lion’s share of the work in CEH’s absence. The two-time First Team All-Pro has been reasonably effective in his time in Kansas City, maintaining a 4.0-YPC average across 56 carries with the club. He has two rushing scores and 12 catches for 90 yards.

Kansas City is also thinking about some depth to its RB room. Per ESPN’s Field Yates (via Twitter), the club is bringing in Elijah McGuire for a visit. McGuire has not seen any regular season action since 2018, but the Chiefs are familiar with what he can do. The former sixth-round pick of the Jets spent the end of the 2019 campaign and all of this year’s training camp with KC but was cut before the start of the 2020 season. He has spent time on the Cowboys’ and Dolphins’ taxi squads this year.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Chiefs To Sign Clyde Edwards-Helaire, Wrap Draft Class

The Chiefs have verbally agreed to deals with all six players in their draft class, as Terez A. Paylor of Yahoo Sports tweets. Here’s the full rundown of the group, headlined by one of this year’s most intriguing rushers: 

1-32: Clyde Edwards-Helaire, RB (LSU)
2-63: Willie Gay Jr., LB (Mississippi State)
3-96: Lucas Niang, OT (TCU)
4-138: L’Jarius Sneed, S (Louisiana Tech)
5-177: Mike Danna, DE (Michigan)
7-237: Thakarius Keyes, CB (Tulane)

Don’t let Edwards-Helaire’s 5’7″ frame fool you – he’s tough, durable, and a proven three-down back. His agility and soft hands made him one of this year’s most coveted rookie RBs, though some evaluators were concerned about his speed. That’s not a huge problem in KC, where they already have ample quickness on offense.

The LSU product is expected to serve as the Chiefs’ top running back, ahead of Damien Williams and Darwin Thompson. Elijah McGuire, Darrel Williams, and former Raiders rusher DeAndre Washington are also on the offseason roster.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Draft Rumors: Dolphins, Herbert, Edwards-Helaire, Aiyuk, Shenault

The Dolphins held a predraft video meeting with Oregon quarterback Justin Herbert, according to Barry Jackson of the Miami Herald, who reports no NFL team has done as much work on Herbert as the Dolphins. Herbert is fully expected to come off the board in Round 1 of next week’s draft, but it’s unclear if Miami will be comfortable taking him with the fifth overall selection. Per Jackson, the Dolphins’ questions about Herbert are twofold: he’s more of an introvert than an extrovert, and he is occasionally inaccurate.

Miami also conducted a video conference with LSU running back Clyde Edwards-Helaire, per Jackson, who indicates the Dolphins could consider Edwards-Helaire with pick Nos. 39 or 56 in the second round. While the Dolphins already signed veteran Jordan Howard this offseaon, Edwards-Helaire, who caught 55 passes in 2019, would add another dimension to Miami’s backfield.

Here’s more on the upcoming draft, which is now only one week away:

  • Speaking of the Dolphins, former NFL executive Gil Brandt says it would not not be a surprise for Miami to take a non-quarterback with the fifth overall pick (Twitter link via Ralph Vacchiano of SNY). While the Dolphins have seemingly spent the past year-plus acquiring draft capital in order to land a quarterback, it’s possible that they could go in a different direction. If Miami opts for another position at No. 5, offensive tackle could speculatively be a target area.
  • A number of prospects– including Arizona State receiver Brandon Aiyuk, Colorado receiver Laviska Shenault, and Cal safety Ashtyn Davis — recently underwent core muscle surgery but have medically cleared, per Ian Rapoport of NFL.com (Twitter links). All three should be ready for the start of the 2020 regular season. Meanwhile, Virginia cornerback Bryce Hall (ankle) has also been medically cleared, while South Carolina receiver Bryan Edwards (fifth metatarsal) and Utah safety Julian Blackmon (ACL) should be cleared by May and July, respectively.
  • While NFL teams aren’t all that concerned about the upcoming remote draft format, they are potentially worried about the undrafted free agent process, according to Jeremy Fowler of ESPN.com (video link). The UDFA signing period is often a frenzy as is, and clubs think the virtual nature of the process could make it even more difficult.

Dolphins Eyeing RBs In NFL Draft

The Dolphins’ recent track record on early-round running backs leaves much to be desired. Since 2000, the Dolphins have selected just two running backs in the first two rounds. Neither one panned out – they picked Ronnie Brown in 2005 when Aaron Rodgers was still available and went with Daniel Thomas over DeMarco Murray in 2011. This year, the Dolphins may look to buck the trend. 

[RELATED: Dolphins Favoring Herbert Over Tua?]

The Dolphins are likely to select a running back in the first two days of the draft, Barry Jackson of the Miami Herald writes. That may include their No. 26 pick towards the back of the first round or the No. 56 pick in the second.

One team official has been telling people that Georgia’s D’Andre Swift is high on their list. And, per a source who spoke with Jackson, he was set to visit in Miami before the league put the kibosh on travel. Ohio State’s J.K. Dobbins left his visit (pre-kibosh) feeling like the Dolphins were infatuated with him. There’s also Wisconsin’s Jonathan Taylor, who went to dinner with RB coach Eric Studesville. Plus, they’ve been in contact with FSU’s Cam Akers. Dobbins and Swift could be in the mix at No. 26, Jackson hears, while Taylor, Akers, and LSU’s Clyde Edwards-Helaire seem to be candidates at No. 56.

If the Dolphins want Swift or Dobbins, they’ll probably have to pounce on them in the first round. Swift has been on the NFL radar since his freshman season, when he averaged 7.6 yards per carry. The noise around him is still substantial after he ran for 1,218 yards and seven touchdowns. Dobbins, meanwhile, is coming off of a 2,000-yard campaign, his third straight season past the century mark.

LSU’s Lloyd Cushenberry, Jacob Phillips Declare For Draft

After winning the national championship, a number of LSU players are planning their next move. Center Lloyd Cushenberry III, linebacker Jacob Phillips, and offensive tackle Saahdiq Charles were among the notable members of the squad to declare for the NFL Draft today.

This past season, Cushenberry helped lead a unit that earned the Joe Moore Award for best offensive line. The six-foot-four, 315-pound center started 28-straight games during his time with the Tigers. Thanks in part to the consistency and durability, the lineman could end up being a first- or second-round pick.

Phillips is projected to go around the same range as his teammate. The linebacker had a standout season for LSU, compiling 113 tackles and 7.5 tackles for loss. Charles doesn’t have the same draft stock as Cushenberry or Phillips, but he was still a major part of the award-winning offensive line. He missed six games this past season due to disciplinary issues.

LSU had a number of additional players declare for the draft today: safety Grant Delpit, linebacker Patrick Queen, wide receiver Justin Jefferson and running back Clyde Edwards-Helaire.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.