Typically, we’d be tripping over each other to draft a 23-year-old former first round back playing in perhaps the best offense in the league, but Edwards-Helaire’s production thus far in his career has been disappointing. He was 27th in points per game (10.8 half-PPR) last year and was 23rd the year before, so from that standpoint, his RB26 positional ADP seems entirely reasonable. Darrel Williams was replaced by Ronald Jones, who can really run the ball, so don’t be surprised if Jones leads the team in carries. Edwards-Helaire should remain fairly involved as a receiver, but his 1.9 receptions per game last season are nothing to write home about. The one reason for CEH optimism is the revelation that he underwent gall bladder surgery during the 2021 offseason and was unable to participate in a full training regimen. He was decent as a rookie (85 total yards, 0.39 touchdowns per game, 4.4 YPC), so if he can get back to that, he could become a viable fantasy starter. But he’s going to have to out-produce Jones to do so.
Jones' addition means that the Chiefs will be making some cuts at running back as time gets closer to the regular season. Jones is no lock to make the roster, but his two seasons of 1,000-plus yards from scrimmage gives him a leg up over McKinnon (injury history) and Williams (ineffective). Jones is a zero in the passing game, so if he does stick with the Chiefs, he will be used in short yard situations or as an injury replacement.