The workouts probably didn't include Sammy Watkins, who signed a three-year, $48 million contract in March when the free agency period first opened. Aside from swapping out Albert Wilson (Dolphins) for Watkins and Alex Smith for Mahomes, the Chiefs will retain the core of their productive 2017 offense, including Kareem Hunt, Tyreek Hill, Travis Kelce and four of five starters on the line. It has the look of a formidable unit, with the potential to reach elite status if Mahomes displays enough pocket presence and accuracy to get the most out of his immense physical gifts. He looked the part of an NFL starter in Week 17 last season, completing 22 of 35 passes for 284 yards and an interception to lead the Chiefs' backups to a 27-24 win in Denver.
It's clear Mahomes has been the Chiefs' quarterback of the future since the team moved up 17 spots to draft him in the first round last April, but it's now apparent that the future is here. The 22-year-old has one start under his belt, a 27-24 win over the Broncos in Week 17 in which he completed 22 of 35 passes for 284 yards and one interception. Known for a rocket arm and athleticism, Mahomes will now get the entire offseason to get accustomed to his new role in the Chiefs' offense.
Mahomes completed 22 of 35 passes for 284 yards and one interception during Sunday's 27-24 victory at Denver. He also rushed seven times for 10 yards.
With the Chiefs locked into the No. 4 spot in the AFC playoffs as the AFC West champion, head coach Andy Reid opted to sit regular starting quarterback Alex Smith, among other front-line skill-position players, Sunday. In Smith's place, Mahomes was able to earn his first NFL start, and he didn't disappoint in the win-loss columns. Granted, Mahomes didn't have his name next to any of the team's three touchdowns, but he directed a 67-yard drive to set of a game-winning 30-yard field goal for kicker Harrison Butker as time expired. As the postseason kicks off this weekend, Mahomes will revert to a reserve role in Saturday's wild-card outing against the Titans.
Mahomes will start at quarterback in Sunday's regular-season finale against the Broncos, Terez A. Paylor of The Kansas City Star reports.
With the Chiefs locked in as the AFC's No. 4 seed for the postseason, the team will give the 10th overall pick in the 2017 NFL Draft his first regular-season playing time. Veteran starter Alex Smith will thus defer to the rookie signal caller in Week 17 before reclaiming the starting gig for the first round of playoffs. Mahomes brings a tremendous arm and a degree of mobility to the table, but it remains to be seen how aggressive the Chiefs will be in terms of play calling in his NFL debut. Given his bargain price, however, Mahomes profiles as a intriguing Week 17 dice roll in daily formats.
Mahomes will remain in a backup role during Sunday's game against the Jets after head coach Andy Reid reiterated that Alex Smith was the Chiefs' starting quarterback, Terez A. Paylor of The Kansas City Star reports.
While some members of the Chiefs' fan base may be clamoring for a change under center after the team lost for the fifth time in six games in Week 12 against Buffalo, Smith isn't completely at fault for Kansas City's demise. Though Smith, who threw 11 touchdowns against no interceptions to key the Chiefs' 5-0 start, has seen his performance taper off dramatically ever since, he's still been adequate over the last six contests, completing 63 percent of his passes and tossing eight touchdowns and four interceptions. With the Chiefs still holding a one-game edge in the AFC West, Reid isn't ready to pull the plug on the battled-tested Smith in favor of the talented, but unproven Mahomes. It still looks like the rookie first-round pick, who was highly impressive in the preseason, may have to wait until 2018 before he gets a fair shake as starter.
|2017||Kansas City Chiefs||1||1||35||22||62.9||284||8.11||51||0||1||2/15||2||1||76.4|
|2017||Kansas City Chiefs||1||1||7||10||1.4||5||0||0||0|
|Year||Team||G||Fum||Lost||Fum Forced||Own Rec||Opp Rec||Yds||Tot Rec||TD|
|2017||Kansas City Chiefs||1||0||0||0||1||0||0||1||0|