Patrick Mahomes has received his fair share of criticism this season for his unusually bad play, which in part has led to a 5-4 start for the Kansas City Chiefs.
One of the more notable criticisms he’s earned recently — and one that is scary due to its accuracy — was when ESPN analyst and former NFL quarterback, Dan Orlovsky, said Mahomes is mechanically the worst quarterback in the NFL after the Chiefs’ 17-10 win over the New York Giants in Week 8. In that game, Mahomes completed 29 passes for 275 yards, one touchdown, one interception, and also sported a 74.6 quarterback rating, per ESPN’s box score.
Well, the criticism of Mahomes was taken a step further entering Week 10 — when the Chiefs face the division-rival Las Vegas Raiders — with one of Orlovsky’s co-workers saying that Mahomes is “broken”.
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Clark: Mahomes is Broken
During an episode of ESPN’s Morning Show, Get Up!, former NFL safety and ESPN analyst Ryan Clark bashed Mahomes after Kansas City’s 13-7 win over the Green Bay Packers at Arrowhead Stadium.
“He’s broken; Patrick Mahomes is broken, and he’s broken because he’s the same that he’s always been, and that’s no longer good enough,” Clark explained on Monday, November 8. “It’s time for Patrick Mahomes to pivot, it’s time for Patrick Mahomes to play football in a different way. But sometimes when you’ve been so successful doing one thing, it’s hard to do another, and they are asking the entire Kansas City Chiefs offense to do this.
“[Defenses are] saying ‘become a running football team, be committed to that,’ they’re saying ‘take the check-downs, be committed to that.’ They’re saying, ‘you know what, you will not have the big play against us, so we’re going to make you earn every blade of grass, and we believe you will make a mistake,’ and that’s what’s been happening. This is a boring offense that refuses to be boring to win football games.”
Mahomes: I Got to Be Better
During his press conference on Wednesday, November 10, Mahomes addressed why he believes the Chiefs are continuing to battle through offensive inconsistencies 10 weeks into the regular season.
“I mean to go back to it, it’s execution. There were plays where guys are open that I’m not hitting, there are plays here and there that we haven’t made a play happen, but that’s it at the end of the day,” Mahomes said. “We’re calling plays, guys are getting open, I got to find those guys, get it to them, they got to catch the ball and move the chains at the end of the day. It’s a thing where it starts with me. I got to be better, I understand that, but I trust in the guys that they’re going to make plays happen. I’m going to keep throwing them the ball and when we run it – I know we have the offensive line and the running backs to do that as well.”
Mahomes and Kansas City’s offense has earned a pedigree over the years for their ability to gash defenses downfield. And while defenses have adjusted to prevent that from being the case this season, that isn’t stopping Mahomes from trying to take those shots when he sees an opportunity.
“I mean obviously it didn’t work, so I would’ve rather thrown it to probably [Travis Kelce] since he was open and got the completion, but I mean I’m going to take shots,” Mahomes explained when asked about a play in particular in Week 9 when he should have thrown it short to Travis Kelce instead of Mecole Hardman downfield. “The last few years I’ve taken those shots and they worked, I’ve taken those shots and they haven’t worked, and we’ve still been able to find ways to score points.
“That drive ended up stalling out after that one so when you look back at it, it’s definitely something that you probably would’ve thrown to someone else, but whenever I got a guy with a chance downfield, I’m going to give him a chance to make a play.”