NFL News

Patrick Mahomes on the AFC Championship Game and his “worst” football

Patrick Mahomes on the AFC Championship Game and his “worst” football

Despite holding a 21-3 lead over the Cincinnati Bengals in the AFC Championship game last January, the Kansas City Chiefs saw that lead slip away, and were forced to watch the Bengals represent the AFC in Super Bowl LVI.

Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes is still dealing with the wounds from the collapse, calling that game recently his “worst playoff football:”

That second half I played, I didn’t play really good football at all. Probably my worst playoff football I’ve played was the second half of the game. So I’m just trying to use that as a learning thing that whenever I’m struggling or a team’s struggling, just find a way to get positive plays, because when you have a lead like that, you don’t want to lose that lead.

As has been well documented, a shift in defensive strategy in the second half of that game helped spur the Cincinnati comeback. In the second half, the Bengals relied on more drop-eight coverages, and those worked to frustrate Mahomes and eliminate big plays from the Kansas City offense. As was found by Next Gen State after the game:

Part of the allure of drop-eight coverages? How they can manage to frustrate quarterbacks and make them impatient. Settling for checkdown after checkdown, or “taking what the defense gives you” on snap after snap can have that effect, especially if a QB is seeing a lead slip away. They become impatient, holding on to the football longer in the pocket to try and create an explosive play.

That is something Mahomes noted himself recently. “We played such a great first half. Even if we weren’t getting what we wanted in the second half, I have to get better at taking what’s there to try to get some points on the board, come away and get to the Super Bowl.”

Perhaps the biggest example of this came at the end of regulation. With the Chiefs on the verge of staving off the comeback with a touchdown to pull out the win, Cincinnati delivered a sack of Mahomes to force a field goal try, and…

Click Here to Read the Full Original Article at Chiefs Wire…