When the Kansas City Chiefs drafted Isiah Pacheco in the seventh round of the 2022 NFL Draft, they might not have expected him to be a key component on a run to the Super Bowl.
Pacheco took over as the starting running back for the Chiefs in November after Clyde Edwards-Helaire suffered an injury. Now, he is acting as a major offensive weapon on a team that includes Patrick Mahomes and Travis Kelce.
On Sunday, the Chiefs defeated the Cincinnati Bengals to punch their ticket to the Super Bowl. This means that the former Rutgers star will act as the feature back for a team fighting for a championship.
Pacheco finished with 830 rushing yards and five touchdowns during his first year. He averaged 4.9 yards per carry and had 13 catches.
In the postseason, Pacheco totaled 12 carries for 95 yards in his first career game against the Jacksonville Jaguars. On Sunday, Pacheco could not get it going on the ground, finishing with just 26 yards, but logged five catches for 59 yards. He also had a touchdown called back due to a holding penalty.
Pacheco will now be the 25th Scarlet Knight to play in the Super Bowl. He joins the likes of the McCourty twins, Clark Harris, Logan Ryan, Sebastian Joseph-Day, and Mohamed Sanu to be featured in recent years.
Leading the way for Rutgers is Duron Harmon, Devin McCourty and Harry Swayne. The trio has been to the big game four times in their careers and have three wins.
If Pacheco is able to stay in Kansas City with Mahomes, he will have a chance to make it to the postseason and beyond each year. Before we think about the future potential, Pacheco will be tasked with making plays against a talented defensive front of the Philadelphia Eagles.
Pacheco was a star at Rutgers who manned the backfield for four years and three as the full-time starter. Now, he is doing the same at the next level.