Former Vikings draft pick playing a key role with Super Bowl contender

(Photo by Rob Carr/Getty Images) Jerick McKinnon
(Photo by Rob Carr/Getty Images) Jerick McKinnon /

Former Minnesota Vikings running back Jerick McKinnon is coming off an impressive performance with the Kansas City Chiefs last weekend.

Almost four years after helping the Minnesota Vikings reach the NFC Championship, Jerick McKinnon is, once again, making an impact for a team that has a chance to reach the Super Bowl. This time, it’s as a member of the Kansas City Chiefs.

McKinnon signed with the Chiefs last April, and during the 2021 regular season, he didn’t really do a whole lot. But that changed last weekend during Kansas City’s win over the Pittsburgh Steelers in the wild-card round of the playoffs.

McKinnon finished the matchup against the Steelers with 142 total yards and one touchdown on 18 touches. The former Vikings third-round draft pick filled in as the Chiefs’ top option in the backfield as the team’s No. 1 running back, Clyde Edwards-Helaire, was unable to play due to a shoulder injury.

Will former Minnesota Vikings RB Jerick McKinnon help the Kansas City Chiefs win the Super Bowl?

As Kansas City prepares for their upcoming divisional-round game against the Buffalo Bills, Edwards-Helaire actually seems to be on track to return to the field this weekend. So what could this mean for McKinnon?

Well, the former Minnesota running back probably won’t get as many touches as he did against Pittsburgh last week, but the Chiefs could still figure out a way to utilize him in their matchup with the Bills.

In a Kansas City offense that already has a ton of weapons, McKinnon’s performance last week has likely made Buffalo’s preparation even tougher. Now the Bills have to not only prepare for the potential return of Edwards-Helaire, but they have to figure out ways to contain McKinnon as well. That’s an advantage for the Chiefs.

Since entering the NFL with the Vikings in 2014, McKinnon has never suited up for a Super Bowl. He was a member of the San Francisco 49ers team that made the big game in 2019, but he was inactive for the matchup.

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So if Kansas City is able to get past Buffalo and then get a win in the AFC Championship, McKinnon could be presented with the opportunity to play in a Super Bowl for the first time ever in his NFL career.