Connect with us


Patrick Mahomes says Andy Reid ‘throws little jabs’ at him if he doesn’t throw deep in Chiefs practices

When Patrick Mahomes first took over as the Kansas City Chiefs‘ starting quarterback, he immediately became arguably the NFL’s premier deep-ball threat. During that first season, Mahomes connected on an NFL-high 75 throws that gained 20 or more yards, while he also attempted a league-high 88 throws that traveled 20 or more yards in the air, completing a league-high 36 of them, according to TruMedia.

Right away, teams started defending the Chiefs differently in an effort to take away the deep passing game; and it had a dramatic impact on Mahomes’ pass distribution. Since 2019, Mahomes’ average depth of throw (air yards per attempt), deep pass rate, and explosive pass rate have dropped pretty consistently, per the TruMedia tracking data. Last season, it got to the point where Mahomes’ average pass traveled the third-shortest distance in the league, and nearly 3 yards shorter than during his debut season as the starter. 

SeasonAY/Att (Rank)Deep % (Rank)Expl % (Rank)
20189.1 (6)15.2% (4)11.8% (3)
20198.8 (10)14.3% (8)9.5% (11)
20208.3 (13)12.1% (10)10.3% (2)
20217.3 (24)11.6% (17)7.9% (16)
20227.3 (23)9.0% (28)10.1% (2)
20236.5 (30)10.2% (24)7.4% (21)

Now, though, coach Andy Reid wants Mahomes to get back to throwing it deep again. And it’s gotten to the point where he is apparently needling Mahomes about it in practices.

“If I don’t, he throws little jabs at me like, ‘Oh, you want to throw the checkdown here?'” Mahomes said, via ESPN. “I’m like, ‘I got you, Coach; we’re going to push it.’ It has been fun.”

While the Chiefs over the last two seasons focused on adding bigger possession receivers to keep pace with the way the league was defending them and adjust to their new reality (JuJu Smith-Schuster and Marquez Valdes-Scantling in free agency; and even Rashee Rice was considered a possession guy coming out of SMU), this year was different. They signed speedster Marquise Brown in free agency and traded up to select Xavier Worthy in the draft. Those guys can fly, and Reid wants to take advantage.

We know Mahomes can make any pass that exists, and even some that don’t. The way defenses have forced him to play over the past few seasons probably isn’t the best use of his vast skill set, even if he has been able to make it work and even win a pair of Super Bowls that way. If Kansas City can get back to slinging it deep more often, though, it will only make the passing attack more difficult to defend. 

Go to Source
Author: Jared Dubin
June 13, 2024 | 3:55 pm

Click to comment

Leave a Reply

More in NFL