Isiah Pacheco is ready to ‘get to work’ for Kansas City Chiefs

Isiah Pacheco
Isiah Pacheco /

The Kansas City Chiefs grabbed running back Isiah Pacheco in the seventh round of the 2022 NFL Draft, and he sounds ready to get to work.

Greg Lewis told Isiah Pacheco that he’d be back for him. It took seven rounds, but the Kansas City Chiefs proved their running backs coach right.

Over the weekend, the Chiefs made 10 total selections in the 2022 NFL Draft, mostly on the defensive side of the ball. In the midst of two secondary additions in the seventh round, however, they decided to add another competitor to the mix in the offensive backfield with the pick of Pacheco at No. 251 overall.

When speaking with reporters after he was taken, Pacheco said that Coach Lewis reminded him of that promise that he was coming back for him. the Rutgers product smiled at the retelling of it all. “Once he told me, I was like, “You were right. I definitely really appreciate you, coach, and believing in me. It’s time to get to work.”

That theme of work was prevalent in Pacheco’s comments, one after another. The well-built linebacker—coming into the NFL at 5’10, 216 lbs.—mentioned his desire to get going, to work hard, to do the little things in an effort to “take another grown man’s job.” Here’s what he had to say when asked what he brings to the Chiefs.

“Definitely being a guy who can compete on all three downs—pass protection, being able to catch the ball, and being able to run on first and second downs whenever we need to gain the short yardage. It’s being able to compete on special teams specifically. It’s coming in the door and giving 120 percent and competing, willing to take another grown man’s job.”

Pacheco earned immediately playing time at Rutgers as a freshman and put up 551 yards on 111 carries and 3 touchdowns. He finished last season, his redshirt junior year, with 647 yards on 167 carries and 5 touchdowns. Pacheco also caught 47 total passes during his four seasons for the Scarlet Knights.

What’s going to be important for Pacheco to earn any playing time in a crowded backfield is going to be the detail work. He’s going to have to learn the playbook, hone his blocking skills, and show exemplary effort to keep fellow prospects like Derrick Gore, Darwin Thompson, and Brendan Knox at bay while also competing with Ronald Jones and Clyde Edwards-Helaire for major reps.

More than the dirty work, Pacheco is also excited to join a team whose Super Bowl window is wide open.  “I’m excited to block for Patrick Mahomes and willing to compete for a championship. I’ve never won a championship in all of my football years playing. I always won baseball and basketball championships, so to be able to go out there to compete for a Super Bowl this year with [Travis] Kelce and Mahomes, I’m just ready to compete.”

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