3 ways Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes can still improve in 2019
Patrick Mahomes has become one of the best quarterbacks in the NFL rather quickly. To some, he is already the best after two seasons in the NFL with the Kansas City Chiefs—including an impressive 2018 campaign.
In 2018, Mahomes threw for 5,097 yards, 50 touchdowns, and 12 interceptions en route to winning the Most Valuable Player Award. The gunslinging signal caller has seen himself compared to the likes of Brett Favre already.
Mahomes is gifted in every aspect of being a quarterback in the NFL. He does things that aren’t even possible of doing in a video game (like his many no-look passes he completed in 2018).
As good as Mahomes already is, there is still room to improve for the young phenom under center. Improve? Stephen A. Smith would likely say that the idea that Mahomes needs to improve is blasphemous.
Mahomes is one of the closest things to a perfect quarterback, but even he has his flaws. But don’t fret, the quarterback with a rocket for an arm is only 23-years old, and his ceiling is somewhere in the stratosphere.
Now here are three ways that the Chiefs quarterback can improve upon his 2018 season in 2019.
3. Keep Putting in the Work/Time
One of the most impressive aspects of Mahomes is seeing his willingness to learn, and his work ethic is hard to match. After barely seeing any playing time in his rookie season, Mahomes prepared himself very quickly to be ready for the starting job.
In 2017, Mahomes sat behind Alex Smith, learning from a veteran quarterback to see what it takes to be an NFL starting quarterback. Unlike other situations, Mahomes was close to Smith and absorbed the information given to him.
He used the knowledge he had learned to put together a historic sophomore season in 2018. Mahomes has another offseason where he can continue to learn under Andy Reid.
Reid is known to be a guru when it comes to quarterbacks. The young quarterback is all ears with Reid and is willing to work hard to continue getting even better—starting in 2019.
2. Protecting Himself
One of the many things that Mahomes learned from the 2018 season is to protect himself at all costs. When you’re the franchise quarterback and one of the faces of the NFL, you need to try your best to avoid injury.
Mahomes can begin by finding more ways to protect himself on the field. Of course, you can’t tell Mahomes to stop making plays with his legs—that’s what makes him so dangerous.
What you can do though, is tell him to avoid taking any unnecessary hits while making plays. Reid will likely be in Mahomes ear telling him this so he can see his superstar under center remains healthy.
As with all mobile quarterbacks, Mahomes is going to take some hits. There’s only so many a player can take though before it starts to wear on them and affect negatively. Mahomes is smart enough to realize how important he is to the Chiefs so this shouldn’t be an issue moving forward.
1. Decision Making
If there was anything at all to critique about Mahomes 2018 season was his decision making. For the most part, he was flawless, but at times, he got overzealous in certain situations.
When you have an arm like Mahomes, you feel confident enough to make any throw on the field. We’ve seen this with someone like Favre before, but having that confidence can sometimes come back to bite you.
There were multiple times where Mahomes uncharacteristically would throw a pass into traffic, thinking he could complete it. The ball would be intercepted like it was to seal the game against the Los Angeles Rams.
On the play, Mahomes evaded a sack from Samson Ebukam, rolled to his right and threw downfield into double coverage. Lamarcus Joyner intercepted the ball with 17 seconds remaining. Mahomes could’ve thrown the ball away and survived for another down (it was only 1st and 10).
Mahomes had a phenomenal game against the Rams, but he did have five turnovers in the game that helped attribute to the Chiefs losing. The Chiefs quarterback undoubtedly used that game to learn from those mistakes.
Those types of plays are ones you tend to live with when the positives heavily outweigh the negatives with a player like Mahomes. Although, Mahomes could improve as a quarterback if he were to eliminate those questionable decisions moving forward.