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Have concussions put Chiefs QB Patrick Mahomes’ career in jeopardy?

There has been a radical change in Chiefs’ quarterback (QB) Patrick Mahomes this season and as a professional evaluator, I believe the reason is his concussions.

I am going to be the first to say, I believe it is career threatening. 

I do not think Mahomes is going to bounce back. I hate to say it, but I believe the symptoms and his performance is only going to get progressively worse. 

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Mahomes now has a history of three documented concussions dating back to Texas Tech and two of those have happened this year.

I believe what we saw in the Super Bowl against Tampa Bay was a manifestation of a concussion against Cleveland in the playoffs. Even the announcer said, “You can see it in his eyes,” which correlates exactly with what I said (click here to read that article). 

I believe something happened on that hit against Cleveland that rest in the off-season did not clear up.

Part of evaluating is the study of human behavior. Part of that study involves studying baselines of behavior. When there is a radical departure from a typical baseline of someone’s behavior, that means there is something serious going on.

We are seeing this with Mahomes. 

Statistically this season, we are seeing a radical change in Mahomes. He has thrown nine interceptions in seven games, after throwing 11 in the two previous seasons combined. His total quarterback rating of 64.0 this season is also at the lowest point of his NFL career (espn.com). 

There is a radical regression in his play in 2021, after a steady four-year progression. 

I question on some of his interceptions, if he is seeing the field properly. I wonder if his vision is being affected similarly to the way QB Aaron Rodgers described back in 2016. 

Something is going on with Mahomes and last week he suffered yet another concussion, off a wicked shot against Tennessee.

Something is going on that nobody is talking about. This is not a case of “defenses are catching up with Mahomes,” as some have suggested. I believe we are seeing symptoms of serious brain damage that nobody wants to talk about because nobody wants him to stop playing. 

Nobody wants to even think that the career of a 26-year quarterback who is playing on a 10-year, $503 million dollar contract could very well be in jeopardy, as I suggested on Facebook back on February 12. Nobody is ready to face the reality that he has looked like a different guy since the Super Bowl. 

I am suggesting we need to face this reality. With what we know about brain injuries and the NFL, we need to face this.

Mahomes is more than just a quarterback. He is a husband and a new dad too.

I think back to the Aaron Hernandez story. I think back to when a brain study was done after his death, which revealed he had the worst brain damage (CTE) they had ever seen in someone who was 27-years-old. 

We do not need to start a petition to bench Mahomes because of his performance like some people have suggested, we need to start a petition demanding the Kansas City Chiefs do a brain scan of Patrick Mahomes. 

Daniel Kelly is a former NFL scout with the New York Jets. He was hired on the regime which featured Bill Parcells, Bill Belichick, Scott Pioli, Mike Tannenbaum, and Dick Haley. He currently writes for Sports Illustrated Detroit Lions and he is a contributing evaluator for Draft Diamonds. For more information about him visit his website at whateverittakesbook.com. He can be followed on Twitter @danielkellybook and his Facebook page is WHATEVER IT TAKES NFL TALK. 

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