Clyde Edwards-Helaire will miss multiple games for the second straight season, leaving the Chiefs thin in the backfield. While Darrel Williams is in line to fill in while Edwards-Helaire recovers from his latest injury, the two-time reigning AFC champions have been looking into a higher-profile fill-in.
The Chiefs have discussed Marlon Mack as a trade option, Jeremy Fowler of ESPN.com notes. The Colts are aiming to accommodate Mack with a trade, and Edwards-Helaire is set to miss at least three games with the MCL sprain he sustained Sunday night.
Kansas City represents the first team connected to Mack, a former 1,000-yard rusher who re-signed with Indianapolis after suffering an Achilles tear in Week 1 of last season. But Mack’s market is cold, per Fowler. A late-round pick would seemingly get a deal done.
A fourth-year UDFA, Williams has served as CEH’s direct backup this season. Free-agent pickup Jerick McKinnon has handled just four touches in five games. The Chiefs opted to bring in a well-known weapon last year to back up Edwards-Helaire, signing Le’Veon Bell midseason. That deal did not end up moving the needle much.
Mack, 25, amassed 1,091 rushing yards and eight touchdowns for the Colts two seasons ago, doing so in 14 games. In 12 games in 2018, Mack helped the Colts go from 1-5 to the playoffs by totaling 908 rushing yards and nine TDs in just 12 games. While the former fourth-round pick has not been used much as an aerial weapon, he showed consistent rushing ability — behind one of the NFL’s best offensive lines — before his injury. Mack also delivered a bit of a breakthrough effort Monday, rushing for 47 yards on five carries. For the season, Mack has just 85 yards on 20 totes.
The Colts have Jonathan Taylor signed through 2022 and recently gave passing-down back Nyheim Hines an extension. This profiles as Indianapolis’ long-term backfield pairing, with Mack now merely representing short-term depth behind Taylor. Mack’s one-year deal includes less than $800K in remaining base salary.