Coronavirus: Super Bowl hero Damien Williams opts out of 2020 NFL season

The Kansas City Chiefs running back will not play in 2020 due to the coronavirus.
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One day after teammate Laurent Duvernay-Tardif opted out of the 2020 NFL season, Kansas City Chiefs running back Damien Williams took the same route and announced on Wednesday he also will not play due to concerns about the COVID-19 pandemic. Williams scored the final two touchdowns in Kansas City's 31-20 victory over the San Francisco 49ers in Super Bowl LIV this past February.

Kansas City made the announcement via Twitter.

"As an organization, we certainly understand and respect Damien's choice, knowing it was made in the best interest of his family," Chiefs general manager Brett Veach said in a statement. "He means a lot to our football team as a player and a person, and we're going to miss having him around this season."

Williams, who became the first player to rush for 100 yards in the Super Bowl (104) while scoring both a rushing and receiving touchdown, was set to make $1.85 million during the final year of his contract. As a result of Williams' decision, Chiefs running back Clyde Edwards-Helaire's fantasy value has skyrocketed. 

With only Darwin Thompson and Darrell Williams behind him on Kansas City's depth chart, the SportsLine Projection Model now lists Edwards-Helaire as the seventh-ranked running back in the NFL after originally having him at No. 15. With proper usage, he has the potential to move into the top three.

The model still projects the Chiefs with 11.5 wins in 2020 and a 21 percent chance to win Super Bowl LV, making them second to the Baltimore Ravens (23 percent).

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SportsLine Staff