Patrick Mahomes

USA Today

Patrick Freaking Mahomes

Better get used to it, Bronco fans. Because he’s only 23.

October 02, 2018 - 9:35 am
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I’ve got bad news, worse news, even worse news, and still worse news for Broncos fans today. The bad news: you just lost to the Chiefs 27-23 last night. The worse news: you got jammed by the refs. The even worse news: Patrick Mahomes played his worst game of the season and you still lost. The still worse news: you’re going to have to see Patrick Mahomes twice a year for the next ten to fifteen years. In other words, get used to it.

Because for a Chiefs fan or a neutral, there was plenty to love. But for a Broncos fan, that was pure torture. Yeah, they lost. And then to add insult to injury, to dump salt in the wound, on third and seven, on the game-winning drive, Patrick Mahomes hit Demetrius Harris for 35 yards, but according to the Broncos players, the play never should’ve happened and the refs know it. The play clock appeared to hit zero before the ball was snapped and before the Chiefs picked up the first down. 

After the game, Brandon Marshall said “It definitely was at zero. The replay showed that. The ref told us that the ref that was supposed to be watching it just missed it. ... He told us that. The ref told us the guy that was supposed to be watching the clock just missed it. So maybe he got caught up in watching the game because it was a good game, but you've got to do your job. Come on, that was huge. That was big."

That was big. But you know what was bigger? You know why Denver lost the game? Patrick Mahomes. It would’ve been so much easier and more comforting to pin that on the ref, but the Broncos aren’t doing that. Because they know the truth. They know what they just saw. And they know what they’re about to see for a good long time. 

And he served it up before the game. You knew it was coming. Did you see that clip of him throwing a football in warmups?

There’s thinking he has a big arm and then there’s seeing him casually chuck footballs from the goal line into the stratosphere. He could take down the sun and the moon with a single throw. He really does have the arm to throw a football over those mountains. 

And it’s not like Denver didn’t show up with a great game plan. They did. They threw everything they had at him. They mixed up coverages. They got pressure. They chased him out of the pocket. They had a 10-point lead in the fourth quarter. And it still wasn’t enough. 

It was enough to force him into his worst statistical game of the season. It was enough to get him off his spot. But even then it wasn’t enough. Because according to ESPN’s stats, he threw for 192 yards out of the pocket last night, the most in the last decade. 

And when he needed it most, he was at his best. 13 of 16 in the fourth quarter. Two touchdown drives. And every time he and the Chiefs should’ve been dead, he found a way to keep them alive. Like being chased out of the pocket on third down with just over three minutes to go. Fail to convert this and Denver probably wins the game. Instead, Mahomes did this

That’s Patrick Mahomes, right handed quarterback, picking up a third down with a left-handed pass. With Von Miller chasing hard and then bringing him down.

And that’s simultaneously impressive and expected. Were you shocked when you saw it? Knowing this guy, I wasn’t. Whatever. Wake me when he throws a pass telepathically, then I’ll be impressed. Because right now, there isn’t a thing he can do that wouldn’t surprise me? 

The Chiefs picked up that first down, then committed a couple penalties, and suddenly it was second and thirty. The drive should’ve been just about over at that point. And with most quarterbacks, it would’ve been. But Mahomes turned a nightmare second down into a manageable third down with a 23-yard completion. 

The left-handed pass might have been the one to get on the highlight reels, but that conversion was the one that broke Denver. According to The Athletic, Chris Harris Jr was repeating “second-and-30, second-and-30” as he left the field at the end of the game. 

That’s what Patrick Mahomes does to you. He takes one of the best cornerbacks in the game and leaves him shaking his damn head. You have to do a lot to impress Chris Harris Jr, so if he’s walking off the field, repeating one line over and over again, you’ve done it. You’ve scarred one of the best players in the game. 

Oh, and Denver still had a chance to win it, but missed on a wide open receiver and then ran a hook and ladder. But the damage had been done. They had plenty of chances to win the game and they didn’t. Not because of the refs, not because of their own mistakes, but because of Patrick Mahomes. Patrick Mahomes plays his worst statistical game of the season and still rips out your heart.  

Better get used to it, Bronco fans. Because he’s only 23. Which means that barring something horrible, Patrick Mahomes will be ruining your weekends for a long, long time. It’ll be 2030 or 2035 and he’ll still be carving up your secondary and leaving your defensive backs speechless.