He wasn’t much of a factor as a receiver, catching two passes for 13 yards. But the possibilities for Edwards-Helaire as a receiver are what intrigued quarterback Patrick Mahomes after the game.
“He was finding little creases here and there to make some stuff happen and I thought the offensive line did a great job getting him those windows,” Mahomes said of Edwards-Helaire. “We’ll keep incorporating him more and more. I mean, he looked healthy so just glad to have him back and hopefully we can find ways to throw him some passes, too. He’s pretty good out of the backfield as well.”
The Chiefs drafted Edwards-Helaire in the first round of the 2020 NFL draft in part because of his ability to catch the ball and make defenders miss in space while he was at LSU. But the Chiefs haven’t used him much in that way. Edwards-Helaire caught 36 passes with one touchdown as a rookie last season.
This Sunday night’s Chiefs-Broncos game was originally scheduled to kick off at noon, but it was flexed to prime time. NBC said the Chiefs now have a quirky record during Andy Reid’s time as head coach.
Since 2013, the Chiefs have had a game flexed into prime time four times, more than any other NFL team. Oddly, three of those games have been against the Broncos.
Here are the previous times:
2018: Chiefs-Bengals replaced Rams-49ers
2016: Chiefs-Broncos replaced Jets-Patriots
2013: Chiefs-Broncos replaced Giants-Packers
What to know for fantasy: Kansas City tight end Travis Kelce has gone over 19 fantasy points in each of his past five Arrowhead games against the Broncos, averaging an outrageous 130 yards and 26.4 fantasy points in the process.
Betting nugget: Nine of Denver’s 11 games have gone under the total this season.
Legwold’s pick: Chiefs 23, Broncos 21
Teicher’s pick: Chiefs 23, Broncos 19
FPI prediction: KC, 68.3% (by an average of 6.4 points)
Broncos’ LBs vs. Chiefs’ RBs
If Fangio leans into two high coverage shells to prevent explosive plays in the passing game, the Broncos will show the Chiefs plenty of light boxes. There will be plays where Kansas City runners get beyond the line of scrimmage, which means it will fall on the second and third level to prevent a four-yard gain from turning into a 10+ yard chunk play.
Baron Browning and Kenny Young were critical to the Broncos’ victory over the Los Angeles Chargers. Young has clearly found his way in the Fangio scheme after George Paton acquired him a little over a month ago. His quick processing and sideline-to-sideline range made him a reliable stopper when the Bolts tried to run the ball. Browning was no slouch against the run and also held his own in coverage against Austin Ekeler and showed off his explosive athleticism in batting down a Justin Herbert pass.
Kansas City activated Clyde Edwards-Helaire off Injured Reserve before their game against the Dallas Cowboys, and he totaled 76 yards on 14 touches in his return. Faster than fast, the 2020 first round pick combines good vision with elusiveness, which can make him a chore to wrangle in space. He isn’t on Ekeler’s level as a route runner, but he has the footwork to create separation and reliable hands. CEH will split time with Darrell Williams, who started in the first rounder’s absence. Williams is a capable receiver and better runner than his paltry 3.6 average yards per carry number suggests. He’s among the 20 most efficient runners through 12 weeks by Football Outsiders’ DYAR statistic which adjusts for opponent strength, and only four spots behind the Broncos Melvin Gordon.
Week 16: Pittsburgh Steelers @ Kansas City Chiefs
Keith Butler and the Pittsburgh defense have had a hard time shutting down opposing offenses. According to ESPN, the Steelers have been outscored 97- 63 during their last three matchups. Many blame the team’s two-game losing streak on their absent defense. As the race to the AFC playoff picture continues, the importance of each regular-season game will increase. Franchises like the Steelers must be prepared to defeat any team that stands in their way to qualify for the upcoming postseason. When these two teams face off in week 16, the Steelers must be prepared to eliminate Kansas City’s big playability.
Around the NFL
“It’s true I am bipolar. I will embrace it and I will be an advocate for mental health,” Everson’s post read. “I been running from it a long time. I’m not ashamed of it anymore. It all started when my mother passed away. Went into a dark place, thought I was great for many years.
“I promise this time I will do everything the experts say and my wife. I love my family and I miss my friends. Thank you for all the love and support, but most of all thank you for all the prayers.”
Seattle can go down fighting, but it is nearly impossible for the Seahawks to crawl out of the hole they have dug for themselves in the standings. FiveThirtyEight gives them a 1 percent chance of making the playoffs. It’s time for Seattle to figure out who among the current core of this roster and who within the organization will stick around for the rebuild.
From the triumvirate mentioned above, the most likely to depart seems to be Wilson. Carroll and Schneider are under contract through 2025 and 2027, respectively, and both have track records strong enough to get through a bad season without landing on a hot seat. Wilson is signed through 2023 but was already the subject of trade rumors last offseason when it was reported that he would waive his no-trade clause and accept a deal that sent him to a selection of teams—at that point, the Cowboys, Saints, Raiders, and Bears.
Miami Dolphins · DE
Ogbah has batted down a pass in seven straight contests (he has nine total), the longest such streak for a defensive lineman since at least 2000. His pressure rate of 10.7 percent is not a fluke but rather a trend, as he posted a rate above 10.0 in each of the previous two seasons. Computer Vision shows that Ogbah has entered a three-foot radius around opposing QBs at the 10th-highest rate at his position this season. He’s also faced double-teams at a higher rate than he did last season. The Dolphins will maximize the production of their excellent cornerbacks if they keep Ogbah’s pressure potential up front.
Making $27 donations in honor of White’s jersey number with the Bills, Buffalo’s fans have so far raised more than $108,000 that will help put food on the tables and in the bellies of families in need in White’s hometown.
As of Wednesday, $108,359 had been donated for the Food Bank of Northwest Louisiana in White’s name. The fundraising initiative was orchestrated by Lara McKee, vice president of The Mafia Babes, and the effort took off when her team started a social media campaign.
“I am at a loss for words for what the Bills Mafia has done for me and my hometown. It truly means the world to me to have my fans support me in this way, by giving back to my community,” White said of the generosity of Bills fans.
“Obviously we have two guys suspended,” Arians began his news conference Friday. “The league did their due diligence and we move on. I will not address those guys for the next three weeks. They’ll just be working out and we’ll address their future at that time. Other than that, there’s really nothing to say.”
Arians’ comments come a day after Brown, Edwards and free-agent wide receiver John Franklin III, a former Buccaneer, were issued their suspensions as a result of a review finding all three misrepresented their vaccination status.
The suspensions take effect immediately with Brown and Edwards eligible to return to Tampa Bay for the team’s Week 16 game against the Panthers on Dec. 26.
Arians underscored that his focus was on Sunday and playing the NFC South-rival Atlanta Falcons.
“It’s a big, big game for us. It’s a division game on the road,” Arians said. “I know everybody wants the other story, but we’re playing the Falcons, I don’t give a s— about that.”
In case you missed it on Arrowhead Pride
Georgia vs. Alabama | 3 p.m. Saturday | CBS
Lewis Cine | Safety | Georgia
A sure tackler, Cine is a playmaking defensive back. He can also be dependable in the passing game; he’s deflected eight passes and intercepted one this season. We already know he looks good in red.
John Metchie III | Wide Receiver | Alabama
Over recent years, the Crimson Tide has cranked out some of the best wide receiver talent the draft has had to offer. The 6-feet, 195-pound wideout can run crisp routes from multiple spots in the offense.
Derion Kendrick | Cornerback | Georgia
L’Jarius Sneed and Rashad Fenton provide a solid duo of young corners for the Chiefs — but unless he is re-signed, Charvarius Ward is set to hit free agency. Kendrick played quarterback in high school, arrived at Clemson as a wide receiver and eventually started at cornerback for the Tigers. With the Bulldogs, he is now a staple of college football’s best defense.