Super Bowl star Damien Williams opts out for Chiefs, opening door for rookie Clyde Edwards-Helaire

Frank Schwab
·3-min read

The Kansas City Chiefs tried as hard as they could to bring back their entire Super Bowl-winning team, but they’ll be without a key contributor in 2020.

Running back Damien Williams, who some argued should have been Super Bowl LIV MVP due to 133 total yards and a pair of touchdowns, has opted out of the 2020 season due to coronavirus concerns.

Fortunately for the Chiefs, they have a replacement: first-round draft pick Clyde Edwards-Helaire.

Damien Williams will not play this season. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill)
Damien Williams will not play this season. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill)

Clyde Edwards-Helaire will play a lot

The Williams news is going to be big in the fantasy football sphere.

Kansas City drafted Edwards-Helaire with the last pick of the first round. He was an explosive playmaker at LSU and the Chiefs obviously liked him, since they made Edwards-Helaire the first running back selected in the draft.

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Williams was going to cut into Edwards-Helaire’s playing time. Williams is a reliable veteran and a favorite of Andy Reid and his coaching staff. After his big performance in the Super Bowl he wasn’t going to be dumped on the bench, not to mention any questions the staff would have about a rookie back in pass protection without a normal offseason and no preseason games.

With Williams out for the 2020 season, Edwards-Helaire doesn’t have much of an obstacle to a full-time role.

LSU running back Clyde Edwards-Helaire (22) stiff arms Arkansas defensive back Joe Foucha (7) in an NCAA college football game in Baton Rouge, La., Saturday, Nov. 23, 2019. (AP Photo/Matthew Hinton)
LSU running back Clyde Edwards-Helaire stiff arms Arkansas defensive back Joe Foucha in a 2019 game. Edwards-Helaire was the No. 32 pick of the 2020 NFL draft. (AP Photo/Matthew Hinton)

Damien Williams had a big role for champs

Williams had a injury-filled 2019 regular season, then was huge in the playoffs. He had 290 yards from scrimmage in three games and six touchdowns. No matter what happens next, Chiefs fans will be fond of him for what happened in their Super Bowl run.

Williams, like other key players who have opted out, didn’t want to risk his health by playing. He is passing on a $1.85 million salary this year.

The deadline for players to opt out is Aug. 3, and there will be a domino effect for many teams as players decide against participating in this season. There already is a pretty big effect in Kansas City.

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