Publish date:

What is the Fantasy Impact of Damien Williams' Opt Out?

SI Fantasy analyst Frankie Taddeo breaks down the loss of the Chiefs running back, and discusses how far it moves up first round rookie Clyde Edwards-Helaire in fantasy drafts.

Due to concerns over the coronavirus, Kansas City Chiefs starting running back Damien Williams has decided to opt out of the 2020 season.

Williams, due to injuries, missed five regular season games last season. However, a case can be made that he was a co-MVP with Patrick Mahomes in the club’s biggest game in the last 50 years. 

The veteran rushed for 104 yards and scored the final two touchdowns late in the fourth quarter in Kansas City’s Super Bowl LIV victory over San Francisco.

From a fantasy perspective, owners will see a meteoric rise for rookie Clyde Edwards-Helaire in all drafts. The rookie will now move from a mid-third to early fourth round ADP into immediate first round consideration playing in arguably the most explosive offense in the NFL. He also will see his ADP skyrocket in Dynasty Leagues as well.

SI Recommends

The LSU product is a dynamic dual-threat and now becomes the most sought after rookie running back in fantasy football drafts. He has excellent hands and will fit in perfectly catching passes out of the backfield and taking handoffs from Patrick Mahomes.

Andy Reid is probably already adding another page to his extensive play sheet (exclusively catered to the rookie's talents) after hearing word from the Williams’ camp of his opt-out. The Chiefs were able to win their first Super Bowl in 50 years by employing a committee approach to the backfield last season but that changes with the Williams opt-out. 

Edwards-Helaire will now become the bell-cow back spelled at times by Darrell Williams, Darwin Thompson and DeAndre Washington.