The Pittsburgh Steelers were helpless to stop Patrick Mahomes from doing pretty much whatever he wanted on Sunday as the Kansas City Chiefs won the shootout, 42-37.
During the game, Mahomes showed off his arm strength, his accuracy and his firm grasp of Andy Reid’s offense. In the end, he completed 23-of-28 passes for 326 yards with six touchdowns and no interceptions, setting a new NFL record in the process.
Coming out of Texas Tech, Mahomes was known for having incredible athletic talent. But after seeing the young quarterback firsthand, Steelers outside linebacker Bud Dupree pointed to something else that helped the second-year quarterback excel.
“I don’t think we gave him enough credit,” Dupree said of Mahomes, per ESPN’s Jeremy Fowler. “I think he was better than we thought. I feel like his intelligence was better than we thought. We thought since he was a young quarterback we could trick him, but he kind of spread us out. He didn’t snap the ball fast so he was really trying to read us, seeing where the weaknesses were before he snapped the ball. Many young quarterbacks can’t really check like that. He showed us otherwise.”
That’s some pretty high praise.
Young quarterbacks do tend to struggle with the mental aspect of the game more than anything else. Mahomes is showing that the speed of the game, and all the mind games that go on during the action, aren’t too much for him.
In fact, it’s pretty clear he was the one dictating what happened, rather than the defenses the past two weeks.
If this young passer can continue to make these kinds of in-game adjustments going forward, the Chiefs will be very tough to stop.