Slowing Patrick Mahomes down has proved to be a nearly impossible task.
The Patriots, to a degree, were able to accomplish this tall order last season, and it prompted a moment of realization for the star quarterback.
New England pitched a first-half shutout of Kansas City in last season’s AFC Championship Game at Arrowhead Stadium. Mahomes had no answers for the Patriots’ defense in the early goings, only completing four passes for 65 yards. Considering the Chiefs offense up until that point had been something of a runaway train, the first-half goose egg under the bright lights was a bit of a wake-up call for the 2018 NFL MVP.
“I think the most humbling (moment) was probably that first half against the Patriots in the AFC Championship Game,” Mahomes said in a sit-down interview with ESPN’s Jeff Darlington. “I just felt like we couldn’t do anything and I felt like I was really letting the defense down. It was holding them to, I think, 10 points in that first half. I knew a lot of that was me not making the right decisions. That was kind of when realized, hey, I gotta make sure I’m ready for everything every single game. No matter who we play, I’ve gotta prepare for it so that whenever stuff happens during games I can make adjustments quickly.”
In fairness to Mahomes, he answered the bell and nearly led the Chiefs to a comeback victory. Kansas City responded with 31 second-half points, and had the overtime coin toss gone its way, there’s a good chance the Chiefs would have been the ones heading to Atlanta for Super Bowl LIII.
While that tough loss to the Patriots might always eat at Mahomes, the sting certainly will be alleviated if KC takes down the San Francisco 49ers on Sunday night in South Beach.
Thumbnail photo via Jay Biggerstaff/USA TODAY Sports Images