Typically, if there is discussion about the recent draft class owned by the Kansas City Chiefs, the word “future” is brought up. Splash some water on your face, pinch yourself, or whatever that needs to be done to wake up, because we are in 2017, and rookie running back Kareem Hunt displayed his pure talent this season in present tense form. Hunt, the kid out of Toledo University, a third round pick with expectations to only relieve veteran first string running back Spencer Ware when need be. There was no reason for Hunt to start right away – the Kansas City Chiefs simply did not need him, yet. Hunt came into game one, with veteran running back skills, and a heart bigger than anyone on the field. In Thursday night’s win, despite a fumble in his first NFL carry, Kareem Hunt’s rookie debut showed why he was a third round steal, in favor of Kansas City. Welcome to the year of Kareem Hunt, this is going to be one to remember.
Kareem Hunt’s Rookie Debut Sets High Expectations Early
What Makes Kareem Hunt So Fun to Watch?
Let’s be honest here, how many had actually heard of the name Kareem Hunt going into the 2017 NFL draft? Perhaps the names Leonard Fournette, Christian McCaffrey, Dalvin Cook, Joe Mixon, and so on, overshadowed the underrated squad that completes the Toledo Rockets, carried by Hunt. This quiet, yet deadly name has taken the NFL by storm, after only one NFL game.
What exactly makes Hunt so fun to watch so soon in his career? An easy answer lies here; Kareem possesses a heart in the backfield that has not been displayed since the bittersweet days of Jamaal Charles.
Hunt showed flashes of Charles in his years at Toledo. It takes two or more tough hits to his knees, to trip him up. Hunt stays on his feet as if his life depends on it. He may not have the speed that many own in the NFL, but Hunt will make you think twice when trying to bring him down.
This is exactly what the Chiefs need in the backfield. Ware is aging, and tacking on injuries that could impact the rest of his career. Teammate Charcandrick West, is a talented back, but is not quite NFL caliber to be a game changer, instead a nice accent to Hunt’s this season.
This simply cannot be ignored. Hunt displayed an unbelievably high ceiling during his first ever NFL start. Typically, rookies show signs of uncomfortable contributions, lack of awareness, and the difficult adjustment to get in the NFL rhythm after success in college. What this means in Hunt’s case is he is not shy to the game, and he will only continue to improve; which is a scary thought for opposing teams. Chiefs Kingdom need to give former general manager John Dorsey credit for making the move on selecting this young phenom.
Broken Records – Kareem Hunt Style
After defeating the star-studded New England Patriots, Hunt was informed during a post game interview that he had broken an NFL debut record by ascertaining 239 yards from the line of scrimmage. Hunt tallied a total of 148 rushing yards, and 98 yards in the air, with a result of three total touchdowns – which is a game for the history books.
Dating to 1994, the most recent record was set by a previous NFL rookie phenom in Marshall Faulk, only to be broken on September 7th, 2017 by Kansas City running back Kareem Hunt. Indeed, this is not a bad way to start off a NFL career. The fun thing is, if this is not too early to say, Kareem Hunt will more than likely have his name etched into plenty of records once he concluded his NFL career.
What is Next?
The Kansas City Chiefs are 1-0. This team came in against the Patriots as an underdog, and they left Massachusetts as the most talked about team in the NFL, in a positive way. Currently the only team with a win, the Chiefs have set themselves up to be a team to beat. Not many teams can go into Gillette Stadium and walk out victorious with a winning margin of 15.
Yes, there were plenty of other positives to pull out of the impressive win, but the game ball goes to Kareem Hunt, with teammate quarterback Alex Smith in a close second. Hunt played with a level headiness as if he has been in the NFL breaking records for years. This is hard to come by these days, as not many players are set up for instant success, such as Hunt.
Many things needed to transpire for Chiefs Kingdom to find Hunt as the starter in the backfield, and everything went the way for this to happen. But, this did not intimidate Hunt, or give him too much confidence. Hunt was able to play his tail off with ease while intertwining his passion for the game. Hunt shows little emotion while playing, as he lets his game do all of the talking.
Welcome to Kansas City Kareem Hunt
Expect Hunt to play incredible this season. He was able to get his first game out of the way, and is now ready focus on the season alone. Hunt will not break a record every game, but if he can stay injury free, there is no reason why Hunt does not become an attractive name to NFL fanatics, or even better, the fantasy football geeks.
Kareem Hunt showed tonight that he was a third round steal, and displayed his talents in ways many did not think was possible. This is not the end of Hunt’s success, as it is only the beginning. Hunt is a name Kansas City will remember for years to come, and not because of the owner of the Chiefs in Clark Hunt, but because of the future of the backfield – Kareem Hunt.