Chiefs activate Clyde Edwards-Helaire ahead of Super Bowl LVII: What it means for the Eagles

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NFL: OCT 16 Bills at Chiefs
KANSAS CITY, MO – OCTOBER 16: Kansas City Chiefs running back Clyde Edwards-Helaire (25) holds his hands up as he runs onto the field before an NFL game between the Buffalo Bills and Kansas City Chiefs on October 16, 2022 at GEHA Field at Arrowhead Stadium in Kansas City, MO. Photo by Scott Winters/Icon Sportswire)

The Kansas City Chiefs appear to have deployed an ace ahead of their Super Bowl clash with the Philadelphia Eagles, or at least, that’s the aim. The team activated Clyde Edwards-Helaire from injured reserve, but how much of a role he will play in the big game is anyone’s guess.

Clyde Edwards-Helaire activated from IR

CEH is absolutely a running back to be feared, but whether or not he’s needed in this offense at this time is a different debate entirely. The third-year running back started the season red hot, before slowly cooling off amidst a backfield battle. In his last 6 games before picking up an injury, Edwards-Helaire accounted for only 94 rushing yards, 34 receiving yards, and a single touchdown. He then picked up an injury that ended his season prematurely.

In his absence, rookie RB Isiah Pacheco stepped up in a big way. He’s been everything the Chiefs have needed and in the playoffs, he flourished. A 95-yard outing against the Jags was a huge reason behind their win.

The Chiefs would be smart, in the biggest game of their season, to ride the hot hand and potentially just use Clyde Edwards-Heliare as a decoy or for situational football. Pacheco has earned the right to lead this backfield into battle against this Eagles defense.

Mecole Hardman hits IR

Elsewhere, they placed Mecole Hardman on IR which kind of cancels out the return of Clyde Edwards-Heliare. The Chiefs already have a fairly banged-up group of wideouts and while Hardman is no world-beater, he’s a valuable depth piece.

What doesn’t help is that JuJu Smith-Schuster came into this week with a questionable injury designation after dealing with some knee swelling. Kadarius Toney also missed practice with an ankle sprain. To say that the Chiefs wideouts are limping into this matchup would be an understatement, and it absolutely plays into the hands of a pick-happy Eagles secondary.

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Scott Winters/Icon Sportswire