Patrick Mahomes has a chance to do something this year that no other quarterback in NFL history has ever pulled off. If the Chiefs beat the Eagles in Super Bowl LVII on Sunday night, Mahomes will end a 56-year QB curse, and the curse is pretty simple: No quarterback has ever led the league in passing yards AND won the Super Bowl in the same year.
Mahomes finished the 2022 season with 5,250 passing yards, which not only led the NFL, but it was more than 500 yards higher than his next closest competitor (Justin Herbert threw for 4,739).
With prolific passers like Tom Brady, Peyton Manning and Drew Brees dominating the NFL over the past 20 years, it seems almost impossible that none of them have led the league in passing yards in the the same year where they also won a Super Bowl, but that's exactly how things have played out.
Not even Brady could end the curse. The recently retired quarterback made it to the Super Bowl twice during a season where he led the NFL in passing, but both times (2007 and 2017), he ended up losing the big game.
Although Manning led the league in passing yards a total of three times, he didn't lead the league in 2006 (Brees led the league with 4,418 yards) or 2015 (Brees led the league with 4,870), the two seasons where he went on to win the Super Bowl.
On Brees' end, although he led the league in passing a total of SEVEN times in his career, he didn't lead the league in passing in 2009 when the Saints won the Super Bowl. As matter of fact, if you want to stump your friends this weekend, you can ask them if they know who led the NFL in passing in 2009 (Answer: Matt Schaub).
Over the past 56 years, only six quarterbacks have even MADE it to the Super Bowl in a season where they led the league in passing yards and those quarterbacks have gone 0-6 in the big game.
Here's a look at the list:
1984: Dan Marino (Lost Super Bowl XIX to 49ers)
2001: Kurt Warner (Lost Super Bowl XXXVI to Patriots)
2002: Rich Gannon (Lost Super Bowl XXXVII to Buccaneers)
2007: Tom Brady (Lost Super Bowl XLII to Giants)
2013: Peyton Manning (Lost Super Bowl XLVIII to Seahawks)
2017: Tom Brady (Lost Super Bowl LII to Eagles)
Although this will be Mahomes' third Super Bowl, this will be his first crack at ending the curse. When the Chiefs won Super Bowl LIV against the 49ers, Mahomes didn't come close to leading the league in passing and that's mostly because he missed two games during the regular season. In Super Bowl LV, Mahomes was the NFL's second-leading passer going into the game, which was won by the Buccaneers 31-9.
The Eagles ended Brady's shot of ending the curse and now, they'll try to do the same to Mahomes.
The Chiefs QB could actually take down two curses this year. If he gets voted NFL MVP, he could become the first player this century to win the MVP and the Lombardi Trophy in the same year. Kurt Warner accomplished that feat in 1999, but no player has pulled it off since 2000.