Chief’s Patrick Mahomes retains elevating the bar on his legacy

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Even on one leg Patrick Mahomes is healthier than Trevor Lawrence on his favourite day. In case you weren’t conscious, Lawrence had by no means misplaced on a Saturday till yesterday, when the Kansas Metropolis Chiefs outlasted the Jacksonville Jaguars, 27-20. In a recreation that was supposedly predetermined, postseason soccer occurred and the league MVP caught an ankle harm early on within the first half.

Playoff soccer has a humorous method of constructing the viewers sit up and concentrate. So with Kansas Metropolis backup QB Chad Henne getting into the sport within the second quarter with the Chiefs backed up on their very own two-yard line, our collective eyes have been on Arrowhead Stadium.

What occurred subsequent was maybe a very powerful drive of KC’s season, and it ended up being the franchise’s longest drive in postseason historical past. The 12-play, six-minute landing march put the house workforce forward 17-7, and set the tone for the remainder of the afternoon.

Mahomes powered via harm

And simply in case you thought the schoolyard bully had been bloodied, Mahomes returned within the second half and led the offense to drives for a landing and a area purpose whereas the protection restricted the Jags to a landing and a rubbish time area purpose that solely served the individuals who took Jacksonville and the factors.

Subsequent Sunday will mark Kansas Metropolis’s fifth straight AFC title recreation, and if the Chiefs can get again to the Tremendous Bowl, the remainder of the convention will formally be taking part in catch up. What we noticed Saturday was a assured, well-coached workforce that is aware of who it’s.

No matter who the opponent is, Mahomes will face per week filled with questions on his well being, and that is the precise type of state of affairs that he can rise to as a way to solidify his spot because the NFL’s alpha canine. No. 15 makes the sport look really easy that it’s solely truthful that he’s compelled to play at a extreme drawback.

Is the Tremendous Bowl KC’s to lose?

Tom Brady and Aaron Rodgers’ seasons are accomplished, and essentially the most logical challengers to the throne face off in Buffalo right this moment. We’ve puzzled all season if KC is sleepwalking, or isn’t pretty much as good as we thought. They have been put able that might make most groups sweat profusely, and navigated it with the benefit of an grownup tying their very own footwear.

Travis Kelce broke the document for many receptions by a decent finish in a playoff recreation (14), and got here one catch away from tying the document for any place. Rookie working again Isiah Pacheco racked up 95 yards on the bottom. Kansas Metropolis outgained Jacksonville regardless of their chief lacking half 1 / 4 and spending the second half along with his ankle underneath 2 inches of tape.

The caveat for all of the Patrick Worth commercials and Andy Reid cameos is soccer followers count on the rings to observe. Whereas Mahomes is separating himself from his friends, he’s getting into a brand new stratosphere, one the place we cease evaluating him to energetic sign callers and begin measuring him towards the greats.

It’s elite firm to maintain, and might make everybody from Rodgers to Peyton Manning look pedestrian. The chat that Mahomes is about to enter is a beast, and he’s competing for a lot greater than one other Tremendous Bowl look. When the sport comes as straightforward to a QB because it does to Mahomes, followers wish to see him pushed to the restrict.

And that’s what the playoffs are about. Murphy’s regulation is in full impact, and the hurdles spring up at random. The enjoyable half is seeing who can preserve their poise when the home is a smoldering ember, and Mahomes handed his first check of 2023 with relative ease.