Isiah Pacheco who came out of Rutgers has been a training camp star with the Kansas City Chiefs. Should the Chiefs give him a chance this Saturday with the first team to see what he can bring to this offense?
Isiah Pacheco didn’t get a lot of touches against the Bears, but seeing him play at full speed with his limited touches showed signs of progress. It would be good for him to start this Saturday so we can see how well he can play with Mahomes and the other starters. It also would be good for him to go behind one of the highest-rated offensive lines in the league, so the team can get a look at what his production might look like. Along with the run game, he needs to showcase his pass-catching abilities, which we got a glimpse of in Chicago. With his speed and aggressive running, he will be an asset in the screen game, especially with Reid being the best at drawing up those plays. So will Pacheco start, and how many possessions will he get against Washington on Saturday?
It wouldn’t be surprising to see him get around three to four possessions against the Commanders this Saturday. Assuming they will treat him the same as last Saturday, they should give him more touches and plays for him to get acclimated to the offense. With the praise he has been receiving in camp, Pacheco will more than likely be seeing more time with the first team on Saturday. Since the rookie has been steadily working with the starters on first and second-team offenses, what else does he bring to the table?
According to Special Teams Coach Dave Toub, Pacheco is going to be returning kicks and possibly punts. However, if he eventually beats out Clyde Edwards-Helaire and becomes RB1, it seems like the Chiefs are more than willing to put another player at kick returner to save his body. Players like Trent McDuffie and Daurice Fountain have been returning punts and kicks all throughout camp, and fellow offensive rookie Skyy Moore returned a kick and punt against Chicago last week.
Pacheco should start, especially if the Chiefs rest Jerick McKinnon, but expect him to be on the bench and to rotate in on passing downs or for screens. Pacheco has the skillset and confidence to be a great weapon for the Chiefs this season, but it starts with getting adjusted to this already complicated scheme. Pacheco is going to be an important player for Kansas City this year, he will provide another dual-threat running back with fewer miles on his legs. It will be important for him to get comfortable with the first team against another team at full speed, especially with the injury history of both Jerick McKinnon and Clyde Edwards-Helaire. Strong indications from camp this week seem to hint at Pacheco starting this weekend due to him getting a lot of reps with the first team, but we will not know for sure until Saturday afternoon in Arrowhead.