During the 2018 and 2019 seasons, running back Marlon Mack ran a yard short of 2,000 yards and added just shy of 200 receiving yards with 18 total touchdowns. Fast forward two seasons and Mack is now the odd man out. The Indianapolis Colts backfield is now led by Jonathan Taylor, with Nyheim Hines paid like a top-10 running back. At only 25 years old, it’s clear that Mack has plenty left to give. Mack has been granted a trade request from the team and will likely be shipped elsewhere. With the NFL Trade Deadline looming, here are three likely places he could end up.
Marlon Mack Trade Destinations | NFL Trade Deadline
Los Angeles Rams
When the Rams lost starting running back Cam Akers to a torn Achilles before the season, their backfield figured to be the downfall of this explosive offense. While Darrell Henderson Jr. has done fine this season, it’s hard to believe the Rams can trust him. He’s rushed for over 400 yards and has reached the end zone five times already. With that said, can he stay healthy? Henderson is only 5’8″ with a 208-pound frame. While that’s certainly tough to bring down, guys with that body type usually don’t last long. If he can’t make it through the season, the Rams suddenly become a very one-dimensional team. Sony Michel as their backup leaves much to be desired, even with his past success.
In this age of football, it is becoming increasingly common for teams to steer more towards a committee approach at the running back position. Even the Browns utilize Kareem Hunt despite having Nick Chubb as their lead back. Mack would not only give the Rams season-long security, but he’d also pair well with Henderson. While Mack hasn’t been asked to serve as one of late, he certainly has experience as a pass-catcher. Mack has also shown he can be an effective runner, as he has eclipsed 900 rushing yards in a season twice. The Rams are one freak injury away from a catastrophe, and a Marlon Mack trade would help fill that hole.
Kansas City Chiefs
The Kansas City Chiefs stand at 3-4 and still have starting running back Clyde Edwards-Helaire on the IR. As good as Darrel Williams and Jerick McKinnon are as backups, this isn’t 2018 anymore. They clearly lack the depth you would expect. If they want to make a deep playoff run, they need more talent in an offense that will be in shootouts every game thanks to their historically bad defense.
While the Chiefs have had their fair share of issues this season, Mack would be a cheap replacement for the issue of their running game. While it is serviceable enough for now, why not take a very small risk on Mack? He would not only serve as great friendly competition for CEH, but he would also give Kansas City a solid safety blanket and yet another weapon for their already explosive offense.
Los Angeles Chargers
Austin Ekeler may be one of the most underappreciated running backs in the league. Unfortunately for fantasy football and Los Angeles Chargers fans, he has trouble staying on the field. Ekeler’s ability to do everything on the field is truly missed by the Chargers when he’s hurt. It’s compounded by the fact that Los Angeles doesn’t have much talent behind him. Joshua Kelley and Larry Rountree III aren’t good enough to start in the NFL, and this is a team that needs a starting-caliber back with how often Ekeler gets injured.
Marlon Mack would not only fit the scheme of the Chargers incredibly well, but he could help keep Ekeler healthy as well. Most of Ekeler’s injury concerns come from his insane workload that takes a toll on his smaller 5’10” frame. Not only would Mack serve as a more than capable backup if needed, but he could also be a nice change of pace back that would ease the burden on Ekeler. In turn, Ekeler could stay healthy longer, and they’d have a hell of a one-two punch out of the backfield. It would be a wide, forward-thinking move at the NFL Trade Deadline.