Tracking Patrick Mahomes: Week 3 vs the San Francisco 49ers

KANSAS CITY, MO - SEPTEMBER 23: Patrick Mahomes #15 of the Kansas City Chiefs looks on after a victory in the game against the San Francisco 49ers at Arrowhead Stadium on September 23rd, 2018 in Kansas City, Missouri. (Photo by David Eulitt/Getty Images)
KANSAS CITY, MO - SEPTEMBER 23: Patrick Mahomes #15 of the Kansas City Chiefs looks on after a victory in the game against the San Francisco 49ers at Arrowhead Stadium on September 23rd, 2018 in Kansas City, Missouri. (Photo by David Eulitt/Getty Images) /

Patrick Mahomes II played his worst game of the young season Sunday and still threw for 314 yards and three touchdowns in a 38-24 victory.

Kansas City Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes is setting a standard that is impossible for any normal human being to sustain. He dismantled the San Francisco 49ers on Sunday, throwing for 314 yards and three touchdowns with zero interceptions. He put up 38 points in a game he where it appeared hear could have easily put up 50.

My wife asked me during the first half of the 49ers game, “Why does he make it look so easy because it’s not supposed to be that easy right?” I just had to laugh and tell her that no it’s not supposed to be that easy, but right now, Mahomes is playing the NFL like a kid playing Madden on rookie level.

As I stated in the intro, this was not a perfect game for Mahomes. Let’s go through the good, the bad and the future following the dismantling of the 49ers.


Spreading the Wealth

One of my favorite things about watching Mahomes play QB is that he doesn’t appear to have a go-to target. Sure he likes throwing to Travis Kelce and Tyreek Hill but he’s not dependent on them. Mahomes targeted 11 different receivers Sunday and completed passes to nine different guys.

So many teams in Chiefs history they have had QB who will only trust one or two guys and grow dependant on that player. Nobody will argue that Tony Gonzalez shouldn’t have been the number one option for Trent Green, but when a defense took him out, Green looked lost. When Kelce went down in the playoffs last year, Alex Smith went into a shell because he didn’t trust anyone else.

Going to so many different receivers week in and week out shows me that Mahomes won’t be hampered by the loss of one weapon. He finds the open receiver and if that is Hill or Kelce awesome, but if it’s Marcus Kemp, then he’s getting the ball too. Teams can’t take away one or two guys and expect Mahomes to wither on the vine. He’ll say “thank you” and throw it to a wide open Demetrius Harris standing all alone in the end zone.

Per Brandon Norris, Mahomes has now thrown a touchdown pass to nine different players. The only offensive players (not OL or QB) to not catch a TD pass this season are Spencer Ware, Damien Williams, Darrel Williams, Marcus Kemp and Alex Ellis.

Zero Turnovers

For the third week in a row Mahomes has proven what I said all along: Brett Favre is not a good comparison for him. All offseason I was told again and again to not expect Mahomes to get off to a good start because it’s his first season as a starter and gunslingers are turnover machines. That is a true statement; the false part was that Mahomes is not a gunslinger in the way most NFL fans think of it.

He played his third game in a row of turnover-free football, and it wasn’t even close. I did not see a single pass in the game today that was even close to being in the danger zone of an interception. It’s not because guys are dropping passes or receivers are turning into good defenders. Mahomes is making smart decisions and not putting the ball in danger.

His college film showed this same type of player and was why he was my number one choice coming out of Texas Tech. He has a long ways to go to be mentioned with Aaron Rodgers, but that is his best comparison going back to his college film. Someone with the arm strength and ability to make any throw at any time, combined with the awareness and vision to not need to force a ball.

Yes, Mahomes will throw interceptions at some point this season, but the idea he’s some turnover machine who would throw 15 to 20 interceptions a season should be put to bed.

The Play

Just by saying “the play,” every one of you likely know what I’m referencing. That play was one I would bet only one or two other quarterbacks in the league can make, and he made it look easy. Yes, I am talking about the drop back, run for your life, 20-yard bullet for in the 2nd quarter.

Mahomes dropped back and was under pressure from up the middle almost immediately. He scrambled to his left, then ran backward doing a 180 back to the right nearly falling down in the process. His ability to avoid that pressure, keep his balance and then keep his eyes downfield made that play amazing no matter what happened after that.

Of course, Mahomes had to turn it into a play that will be shown on his highlight reel for the rest of his career by firing an off-balance bullet between two defenders perfectly into Chris Conley’s hands.

It’s a play that only one or two other quarterbacks in the NFL can make and yet it did not surprise me one bit that he could make it. This is a play that Chiefs fans should both appreciate and expect from Mahomes for years to come.


Deep Ball a Little Off

At this point finding the bad for Mahomes each week is being nitpicking, but they are there. On Sunday, Mahomes long ball was just a bit off. He underthrew Tyreek Hill by a yard or two allowing Richard Sherman to catch up and break the pass up. Although to be fair, replays showed that to be a pass interference on Sherman, but a throw leading Hill is an easy six there.

Later in the game, he overthrew Demetrius Harris and Sammy Watkins on routes they were yards ahead of their defenders. They were the right reads to guys wide open, he just seemed a little overhyped in his first start at Arrowhead. I don’t think anyone can blame him for that, and I don’t think it’s some issue with him.  But for one game, he was a bit off on his long ball touch.

Stale Second Half

After putting up 35 points in the first half and being able to seemingly score at will, the fact the Chiefs only managed three points in the second half was disappointing. I think head coach Andy Reid was playing conservative and trying not to run up the score and embarrass the other team, but it looks bad.

Mahomes was a little off in the second half and seemed to be overthinking plays at times. I think that was more due to Andy telling him to take his foot off the gas than Mahomes playing badly, but Mahomes had chances to make big plays that he missed. Hopefully in the future Mahomes can overcome Reid’s play calling and maximize those few chances he gets with a lead to really put a team away for good.


I use to always hate those “on pace for” numbers, but they are becoming my favorite part of these articles. Mahomes increased his yardage in this game and is now on pace to throw for 4,778 yards while maintaining his interception pace of zero. His touchdown pace did fall from an 80 touchdown pace to only a 69 touchdown pace. Disappointing I know, but still a solid NFL record-breaking pace.

The Chiefs put up 38 total points which keeps their league-leading average near 40 points per game. After three games it is safe to say that the Chiefs will have a top three offense in the league this season. They may not break the records they are on pace for, but there won’t be any six or 10 point games either.

Next. The Chiefs are legit Super Bowl contenders. dark

As a wise man named Dan Patrick use said, “You can’t stop them, you can only hope to contain them”. So far the NFL is still looking for ways to even contain Mahomes and the Chiefs offense.