- Patrick Mahomes dominated in his first season as an NFL starting quarterback.
- Unfortunately, there was one opponent Mahomes couldn’t best – Tom Brady and the New England Patriots.
- Mahomes told Peter King of NBC Sports that he’s learned a lot from his two games against the Patriots and is hoping the next ends differently.
- The Chiefs and Patriots will go at it once again in Week 14 of the 2019 season, and could also find themselves once again facing off in the AFC Championship come January.
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Patrick Mahomes accomplished a lot in his first year as a starting NFL quarterback.
He became just the second quarterback in NFL history to throw for more than 5,000 yards and 50 touchdowns, led the Chiefs to the top-seed in the AFC, and won league MVP.
But there was one thing Mahomes was unable to do throughout his 2018 campaign despite his undeniable brilliance – beat Tom Brady and the New England Patriots.
Mahomes had two good shots at the greatest dynasty in football, once during the regular season, and once more in the AFC Championship Game, but fell short on both occasions.
There’s no margin for error against the New England Patriots.
Speaking with Peter King of NBC Sports, Mahomes said he learned a lot from playing against Brady. Specifically, there is no margin for error, and he has to make adjustments quickly.
“You can’t make mistakes against Tom Brady and coach [Bill] Belichick and the Patriots the way we did in both games, early in the game,” Mahomes told King. “We obviously made things happen in the second half of both those games and gave ourselves chances to win. But if we just go in with the mindset of making adjustments even quicker, making sure that you go out there with a game plan and execute at a high level just from the beginning. They’re gonna keep executing, so you better too.”
Head coach Andy Reid appreciated Mahomes’ assessment of his performances against the Patriots. “Astute observation by a smart player,” Reid told King after he had relayed Mahomes’ comments. “It’s always a short feel-out process against a championship team, fast and furious. We better learn that.”
Slow starts have doomed Mahomes and the Chiefs in his two starts against the Patriots thus far.
In both of Kansas City’s games against the Patriots last season, slow starts doomed the Chiefs.
At their first meeting in October in Foxborough, Mahomes led the Chiefs on an astonishing second-half comeback, erasing a 24-9 deficit at halftime to tie the game 40-40 in the final three minutes of action. Unfortunately, Brady would get the final possession, marching down the field to set up Stephen Gostkowski for a chip-shot field goal to win the game.
The story in the AFC Championship at Kansas City was much of the same. Trailing the Patriots 14-0 at halftime, Mahomes once again brought the Chiefs to life in the second half. They rattled off 24 points in a wild fourth quarter capped off by a field goal to force overtime as the clock expired.
But the Patriots would win the toss, elect to receive, and again, Brady marched down the field and won the AFC title before the Chiefs offence had a chance in the extra period. The Patriots would go on to win the Super Bowl, while the Chiefs were left to wonder what happened.
Mahomes and his teammates will get at least one more shot at the Patriots this year when they meet in New England once again in Week 14. Depending on how the postseason breaks, another rematch in the playoffs feels like a high possibility as well.
Together, Brady and Belichick have made the Patriots the greatest dynasty the football world has ever known. However, if Mahomes can learn from his past meetings against the pair, this may be the year he gets the better of them.
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