Patrick Mahomes has led Kansas City to the AFC Championship Game for the third consecutive season, but there are real concerns about whether or not he'll be able to suit up for the Chiefs when they host the Bills on Sunday in search of another Super Bowl appearance. The star quarterback exited last weekend's win over the Browns after getting tackled to the ground and driven into the grass. As he tried to get himself up, Mahomes was clearly woozy and ultimately unable to stand up on his own, which presented an awfully scary situation for the NFL and the Chiefs.
Mahomes was eventually ruled out and Andy Reid noted after the game that he was in concussion protocol, while also saying that he "passed all the deals that he needed to pass so we'll see where it goes from here." The reigning Super Bowl MVP also took to Twitter to say that he's "all good" while responding to Browns linebacker Mack Wilson, who tackled him on the play.
While there are positive signs suggesting that he could be cleared to play in time for Sunday's AFC championship, Pro Football Hall of Fame quarterback Brett Favre is cautioning Mahomes not to rush things.
"I played 321 straight games, it kind of goes against everything that I stood for when I played," Favre told TMZ Sports. "But, you got to be smart. You've got to be smart," he said. "I was never faced with a decision like he potentially will face this week. Ultimately, the decision may fall on doctors and if they choose that he doesn't play then it's the right move because of the long-term damage.
"When you're in the moment, and you're young, you're bulletproof, man. I'm 51 years old and I'm wondering what tomorrow will bring because of concussions more than anything."
While Mahomes is technically in the concussion protocol, he may not be dealing with a concussion at all. He passed all the concussion tests and, per Carrington Harrison of CBS Sports Radio in Kansas City, Mahomes was actually woozy due to a nerve in his neck that was tweaked due to the hit. While that may get him out of the woods as it relates to a concussion, Mahomes will still need to go through tests to make sure he has a green light play.
Regardless of whether or not it's nerve damage in his neck or a concussion, Favre's message does remain the same: Be careful, be smart and think about your long-term health.
The Chiefs will host the Bills at Arrowhead Stadium on Sunday beginning at 6:40 p.m. on CBS. Of course, Mahomes' status should be heavily monitored heading into that showdown.