The digital-first, student-run magazine of the University of Massachusetts Amherst Journalism Department

Amherst Wire

The digital-first, student-run magazine of the University of Massachusetts Amherst Journalism Department

Amherst Wire

The digital-first, student-run magazine of the University of Massachusetts Amherst Journalism Department

Amherst Wire

Patrick Mahomes has turned the Kansas City Chiefs into a dynasty

The Chiefs became the first team since the 2004 Patriots to win back-to-back championships.
Chiefs on X

When the Kansas City Chiefs selected Patrick Mahomes with the 10th pick in the 2017 NFL Draft they took a chance hoping Mahomes would be their solution at quarterback. 

At the time Mahomes was regarded as one of the better quarterback prospects in the draft but never gained the momentum needed to be the No. 1 overall pick. His technique and mechanics were questioned coming out of college and Mahomes’ gunslinger mentality in college would become problematic when he got into the NFL. 

After sitting his first season in the NFL, he won MVP the next year and took the Chiefs to their first Conference Championship game since 1993. Now he is a three-time Super Bowl champion, a three-time Super Bowl MVP and added another MVP.

In just six seasons as a full-time NFL starter, Mahomes has racked up a Hall of Fame worthy career. All of this seemed unfathomable at the beginning of the season. After losing the season’s opening game to the Detroit Lions, where the Chiefs receivers dropped the ball eight times, the Chiefs looked far from a team that had just won the Super Bowl. A lack of investment on the receiving front was supposed to cost the Chiefs the chance to win back-to-back Super Bowls.

However, the Chiefs racked up six straight wins and despite an uncharacteristic loss to the Denver Broncos that snapped the Chiefs’ 16-game winning streak against them, the Chiefs headed to their bye 7-2. After the bye, the Chiefs capitulated and fell from the number one seed to the third seed. 

The season’s last eight games saw the Chiefs go 4-4 with some of the worst football the Chiefs had ever played under Mahomes. It’s no surprise that those eight dropped passes against the Lions set the theme of the season for the Chiefs.

The Chiefs lead the league in dropped passes in the regular season with 44. Tensions began to flare in Kansas City, with Mahomes becoming more visibly frustrated with his receiving core. In week 11 against the Philadelphia Eagles, Mahomes’ pass to receiver Marquez Valdes-Scantling clanged off his hands for a chance to take the lead. Two plays later, to extend the game, another pass off the hands of tight end Noah Gray. 

Three games later, another mistake by a Chiefs receiver costs them the game. This time it was Kadarius Toney. Toney, notorious for dropping passes in his career was caught being lined up offsides for a play that would have given the Chiefs the lead once again. Mahomes slammed his helmet in frustration with the call on the field, but Mahomes should be more frustrated with his receivers costing him games.

After the game, Mahomes reaffirmed that he still believes in his receivers. However, belief is one thing, execution is another because the next week, against the New England Patriots, Mahomes had enough of Toney. Toney could not handle a pass from Mahomes that led to an interception. The Chiefs won the game, but Mahomes was losing trust in his receivers. It got worse because the next week against the Las Vegas Raiders, the Chiefs had their worst game of the season.

Mahomes had back-to-back turnovers that turned into Raiders touchdowns. The Chiefs’ defense was getting dismantled, the special teams were missing field goals and the offense was not clicking like it used to. This time it wasn’t Mahomes who was showing his frustration, but rather tight end Travis Kelce throwing his helmet to the ground. Head coach Andy Reid exchanged some words with Kelce. The Chiefs were in turmoil. 

With everything not going their way, the Chiefs were a far shot at reaching the Super Bowl. Teams such as the Baltimore Ravens were playing better football, and for the first time in his career, Mahomes would have to play on the road in the playoffs. However, it would be foolish to doubt an elite quarterback such as Mahomes, just like a certain quarterback who dominated the league for 20 years.

Once the playoffs, hit, the Chiefs did what they do best, dominate in the playoffs. The Chiefs eased past the Miami Dolphins in the Wild Card round, escaped Buffalo with a win against the Bills and showed off their defensive prowess by taking down the number one seed Baltimore Ravens, returning to the Super Bowl for the fourth time in five years.

A rematch against the San Francisco 49ers awaited the Chiefs. This was not the same Niners team the Chiefs played four years ago. The Niners had a retooled defense and added a star running back in Christian McCaffrey, and they came out ready to go, scoring 10 unanswered points in the first half. Only managing a field goal in the first half, and the offense reverting to their regular season form, the Chiefs were stuck in the mud.

Only one man wearing red was going to pull the Chiefs out of this mess, and it was none other than Mahomes himself. Mahomes led the Chiefs to score 13 unanswered points to take the lead against the Niners. Followed by leading the Chiefs to a game-tying and winning drive to cement himself as one of the greatest quarterbacks to ever play the game. This was the third time in Mahomes’ career that he has come back being down by double digits.

Mahomes magic is real as with his back against the wall numerous times this season, he has found ways to prevail no matter the circumstances. What is being witnessed right now is a dynasty in the making. At only 28, Mahomes is having a career people dream of having. Only time will tell if Mahomes is the greatest player of all time.

“As long as you keep winning, teams start to not like you, and I want to keep winning,” Mahomes said about the Chiefs’ success. “So if that means some of the other teams and other fan bases aren’t going to like me, I’ll try to still have a smile on my face and not be a bad example, but I can be that villain for them if they need me to be.”

One thing is for sure, you may hate Mahomes and the Chiefs, but you are going to have to start respecting Mahomes and the Chiefs. With Mahomes at quarterback and Reid at the helm, there is nothing that can stop the Chiefs from winning it all again.


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