Patrick Mahomes, the ‘Face of NFL’
With 22 NFL players on the field, each one bigger and stronger than the next, it takes a lot for a single player to stand out and get noticed. The AFC West is strong at the top after the Kansas City Chiefs won the recent Super Bowl. While Kansas City has been in the news lately with its fair share of headliners, the departure of JuJu Smith-Schuster, and the signing up of new talent (Charles Omenihu and Jawaan Taylor), the main story however, is, well, QB Patrick Mahomes.
Kansas City QB Patrick Mahomes has a mind for victory, and there’s no denying that this Super Bowl MVP has power over the NFL. Showtime Mahomes has been to three Super Bowls in four seasons, winning the last one. In a short span of five years, Mahomes has won a litany of titles and accolades, including the Super Bowl MVP, Super Bowl, and MVP. Heck, at this rate, Mahomes can retire today and still waltz into the NFL Hall of Fame in 2028 (which is the first year he’ll be eligible). Until then, here are some of the highlights of this amazing athlete so far.
From Pitcher to Showtime Superstar
Mahomes’ football career kicked off in 2014, during the MLB First-Year Player Draft, when the Detroit Tigers selected Mahomes in the 37th round. The youngster turned down the offer and opted to join Texas Tech University instead, but getting selected in that first draft was a nudge in the right direction.
It took a few more years and a not-so-stellar appearance as a freshman pitcher for a college team for Mahomes to realize that football was his true calling and start to get serious about getting into the NFL.
While playing as a junior under the banner of the Red Raiders, Mahomes scored an impressive 13-19 and broke records left and right during his time at Texas Tech. He played four games with a total of 500 passing yards which turned out to be just a taste of what was to follow. During the final game, Mahomes made six touchdowns, threw 586 yards, and had no interceptions.
Having seen what the young athlete was capable of at a collegiate level, it was not long until he was drafted by the Chiefs in 2017. However, it was a gamble for the Chiefs after the unorthodox quarterback was passed on by nine other teams. But it was one that paid off in the end. The Chiefs got a formidable replacement for Alex Smith, and NFL fans got one of the best signal callers in the history of the game.
While it all worked out in the end, Mahomes almost didn’t make it to the Chiefs’ corner during the 2017 draft pick. The Chiefs had the 27th pick in the first round, but the Bills sent their 10th selection in exchange for the 27th pick. This happened during the third round in 2017 and the first-round pick the following year.
This ended with Bill's bagging Tre’ Davious White, who is undoubtedly, one of the best cornerbacks in the NFL, and later Josh Allen in a trade-up, while Mahomes ended up in the Chiefs’ corner. If not for that crucial trade-in in the end, the Saints would have gladly selected Mahomes as their quarterback since Saints coach Sean Payton was already impressed by the young quarterback.
So, Mahomes came very close to being snapped by a different team. While Chiefs fans would scoff at the idea, it would be interesting to see Mahomes and Drew Brees in the same uniform.
Today, Mahomes is considered to be one of the best quarterbacks in the NFL’s history and has appeared in two Super Bowls in just four years after starting his career in the league. Mahomes took home the title of NFL MVP back in 2018 and made history again after the Chiefs won the Super Bowl recently.
On the Diamond
On the football field, Mahomes has officially reached legendary status. But, apart from being the face of the league, Mahomes is just as interesting off the gridiron. Before flinging the ball halfway across the field, Patrick Mahomes’ cannon-like arms were on full display in a quick stint at baseball, a sport that his father played professionally, and where Patrick doubled as a pitcher and an outfielder. While playing for the Whitehouse High School in 2014, Mahomes struck out 16 players in a no-hitter and was on the radar of talent scouts in both the football and baseball camps.
According to talent scout Tim Grieve, the 18-year-old had a strong arm that could hit the mid-90s (93mph, to be exact), and his high school baseball highlights show just that. While having a promising career ahead after the Tigers drafted him, Mahomes opted not to pursue a career in professional baseball. For football fans, it’s hard to think of a time when the NFL wasn’t on the cards for Patrick Mahomes, but thankfully, Mahomes dreamt of pitching the ball farther, which made football a more physically and monetarily viable choice.