One of the breakout stars of the early part of the 2018 season is Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes. Even after "struggling" over the past two weeks, Mahomes is still completing 63.6 percent of his passes, averaging 8.6 yards per attempt, and has thrown an NFL-high 14 touchdowns against just two interceptions. He's added two scores on the ground and has routinely used his legs to extend plays and give his receivers time to get open. 

Mahomes' next test comes Sunday night, when the Chiefs take on the New England Patriots at Gillette Stadium. It's safe to say that Bill Belichick is a fan of what he's seen out of Mahomes so far. 

"He gets the ball to all of his receivers quick, quick release, sees things quickly, can extend plays," Belichick said, per the Boston Herald. "[He's] got a great arm, got a fabulous arm, can throw the ball out of the stadium. He makes good decisions, accurate, gets the ball out on time."

Mahomes has indeed been one of the best deep passers in the NFL so far this season. On throws 15 or more yards downfield, Mahomes is 23 of 43 for 645 yards, five touchdowns, and an interception. That's good for a 127.8 passer rating, which is fourth-best among the 37 quarterbacks who have thrown at least five such passes, according to Sports Info Solutions. 

And as Belichick knows, being able to beat the defense deep can stretch a defense to its limits. "The further the quarterback can throw it then the more you've got to defend," he said. "If the ball is on their 20-yard line you've still got to defend to the goal line against him. He can rip it."

New England's defense against deep passes has been strong this season, with Football Outsiders ranking them second in DVOA against passes thrown 15-plus yards downfield. They Patriots will need to continue that strong performance in order to deal with Mahomes and company on Sunday.