Lead Patrick Mahomes is busy even during his bye week

KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) — The timing of the Kansas City Chiefs’ bye this week couldn’t have come at a better time for Patrick Mahomes. And not just because the bumps and bruises from the first seven games of the NFL season will have a chance to heal.

There’s the Kansas City Current, the women’s professional soccer team owned by his wife, Brittany, who will play for the Portland Thorns for the NWSL championship Saturday in Washington, D.C., and the Kansas City Royals, the Major League Baseball club she plays for. own share, which is close to hiring a new manager.

Oh, and then there’s “Call of Duty” with its buds.

It was playing this game with JuJu Smith-Schuster, Travis Kelce and Marquez Valdes-Scantling a week ago that Mahomes credited with improving communication in last week’s win over San Francisco.

For the first time all season, Mahomes looked on the same page with his new wide receivers along with his respectable tight end, and the result was an offensive explosion against one of the NFL’s best defenses. The 44-23 victory sent Kansas City to its 5-2 week and atop the AFC West, rather than 4-3 and tied for the lead with the Chargers.

“I don’t play all the time,” Mahomes explained afterward. “I had a night off on Friday, so I told them, ‘I’ll continue with you for a while.’ It was me, Travis, Marquez and JuJu. Marquez and JuJu are really good. Me and Travis are just fine. We did our part and went three for three with three wins in Warzone, which I don’t do often.

“So,” Mahomes said following the 49ers, “I felt pretty good about it coming into the game.”

Truth be told, Mahomes should feel good about how the first half of the season went.

The big question mark surrounding the Chiefs had to do with replacing Tyreek Hill, a speedy safety blanket for Mahomes the last few years. But his numbers through the first seven games have been as good as they’ve ever been: He leads the NFL in touchdown passes (20), passing yards (2,159) and passer rating (109.5) among true quarterbacks while facing three of the top 10 scoring. defense in the NFL during that time period.

Against the 49ers, when Mahomes threw for 423 yards and three scores, Valdes-Scantling caught three balls for 111 yards and Smith-Schuster caught seven for 124 and a score. It was the first time Mahomes had two players with at least 100 yards receiving in a game in which neither player was Kelce or Hill.

“Patrick Mahomes is the definition of a Hall of Famer. He changed the game,” Bills pass rusher Von Miller said. “Nobody ever played the game like him. He left a mark on our sport, he left a mark on our league.

“And,” Miller said, “he influenced his teammates to play at a higher level than they normally would.”

Speaking of Hall of Famers, the win over the 49ers was Mahomes’ 55th in his first 70 starts, tying Hall of Famer Ken Stabler for second most at this point in his NFL career. Only Otto Graham, another Hall of Famer, has gotten off to a better start with 56 wins since the NFL began tracking such numbers in 1950.

Mahomes also keeps rewriting Chiefs history.

He just passed Trent Green for the second most career passing yards with 1,726 and needs 360 yards to pass Green (21,549) for second in yards. At his current pace, he could surpass Hall of Famer Len Dawson (28,507) as No. 1 sometime next season, along with passing Lenny Cool’s record for TD passes (237).

“It’s too much crazy fun,” said another Hall of Fame quarterback, Joe Montana. “He does everything you tell any quarterback you can’t do or don’t do. It does it all and it does it well. Don’t drop off the back foot, don’t go this way, don’t throw the weapon, don’t throw late into the middle. He’s one of the most talented guys you’ll see in this position.”

The result is plays that few other quarterbacks in the NFL can make.

“Some guys just have an innate ability to look down the field and try to make plays,” head offensive coordinator Eric Bieniemy said. “He’s got pilot vision eyes where he can see the whole field. Some guys don’t have that where they basically see the flag thrown to the left and also understand, ‘I’ve got receivers potentially open downfield,’ because the defense has let up. So we support it. We want him to try (to) play the game whenever he can.”

However, he won’t have to play any games this week. Mahomes will be busy watching the current title game and possibly getting a call from Royals general manager JJ Picolla to end the managerial search.

Even so, football probably won’t be far from Mahomes’ mind.


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