Patrick Mahomes concussion in the third quarter of the Kansas City Chiefs 22-17 victory over the Cleveland Browns last night almost put paid to the Chiefs hopes of retaining the Superbowl.
Last year’s Superbowl MVP was on course to lead the Chiefs comfortably into next week’s AFC Championship with the Bills. That changed when with the score at 19-3 in the Chiefs favour, Mahomes elected to keep the ball and run on a third and one midway through the third quarter.
Browns linebacker, Mack Wilson, made a strong but fair tackle and at first glance it looked innocuous. However, when Mahomes tried to get up from the turf, his legs looked extremely wobbly and his eyes somewhat vacant.
The Chiefs quarterback was then taken into the blue tent and followed the concussion protocol before being ruled out the rest of the game. You can see what a doctor thought of the injury in the video below.
Henne-way To Win Will Do For The Chiefs
Chad Henne took over at quarterback for the Chiefs while Mahomes was out of the game, but the Chiefs offense was notably less effective.
The Browns scored a touchdown through Jarvis Landry to make it 19-10, but Henne responded to lead the Chiefs to a field goal to make it 22-10. However, another Browns touchdown from RB Kareem Hunt managed to cut the deficit to just one score as late in the fourth quarter, the Chiefs led just 22-17.
However, in a crucial drive with around four minutes remaining, the Browns could not take the ball into Chiefs territory and were forced to punt the ball away. With just one time out left, due to a botched challenge against a legitimate Tyreek Hill catch.
The Chiefs managed to run the remaining time out. Henne almost converting a 3rd and 14, before throwing a stunning completion to Tyreek Hill on fourth and inches to allow them to line up in victory formation and run out the clock.
Mahomes Injury Status Day To Day
Despite the win, Mahomes injury status now will dominate the thoughts of Chiefs fans for this week.
Following the game, coach Andy Reid gave positive feedback on how his starting quarterback was, commenting that he was “doing great right now” and that Mahomes had “passed all the deals that he needed to pass.”
Mahomes himself tweeted “All good brother” in response to Mack Wilson, the Browns defender that tackled him in the game causing the concussion.
All good brother! 💪🏽 https://t.co/ORwLG6eFTV
— Patrick Mahomes II (@PatrickMahomes) January 17, 2021
However, the Chiefs face an anxious wait. Mahomes is now required to go through a lengthy five-step process of testing. This is conducted by an independent neurological consultant who will decide whether Mahomes can play in next weekend’s AFC Championship game.
Lying in wait there is the power offense of the Buffalo Bills, led by Josh Allen, rated by many as the Bills answer to Mahomes.
Allen led the Bills to a 17-3 victory over the Baltimore Ravens in a blustery Buffalo in Saturday night in what was a much closer game than the scoreline suggests.
Bills fans will know that a Chiefs offense without Patrick Mahomes is a much less fearsome prospect than one with him, with all due respect to stand in Chad Henne.
How Has Mahomes Concussion Affected The Superbowl Odds?
In short, massively. DraftKings Sportsbook has revealed their new odds for the four teams remaining in the Playoffs to win the SuperBowl and the Chiefs are now just the slight favourites (+200) ahead of the Green Bay Packers (+200). The Buffalo Bills are +325 with the Tom Brady-led Tampa Bay Buccaneers the outsiders at +450.
Mahomes concussion seems to have really levelled the playing field in this market and if you want the best price you can find on the Chiefs to win a back-to-back Superbowl, then you are not likely to find much better odds than is available at present.
Assuming of course, Mahomes is good to go at the weekend.
Bills fans may think differently, but to be denied the prospect of a Mahomes v Allen matchup for the AFC Championship, would be of huge detriment to the game. Let’s hope the Chiefs quarterback is fit and ready to take on the Bills in what should be an epic AFC contest next weekend.
*Featured Image Courtesy of Jeffrey Beale – CC.BY.S.A 4.0