NFL quarterbacks are sensitive creatures. They have a plethora of special rules to keep them from suffering the kind of routine, brutal damage taken by the other positions, and they’re always looking over their shoulders for some young, undrafted gunslinger eyeing the throne. After Patrick Mahomes’ MVP performance last season, the Kansas City Chiefs phenom has set his bar high, but perhaps not out of reach of veteran superstar Aaron Rodgers.
Rodgers has been on fire this season, compelling Mahomes to do all he can--from downing habanero peppers to wearing a ski jacket in the sauna--to remain in the MVP conversation. In week eight, sidelined after a dislocated kneecap in week seven’s game against the Denver Broncos, Mahomes’ insecurity over falling behind in the MVP race reached a fever pitch.
Throughout Sunday night’s game against the Green Bay Packers, Mahomes threw five touchdown passes while standing on the sideline. Each time his team passed midfield, Mahomes knew he was within striking distance. Despite repeatedly being told that his touchdowns would not count and would, in fact, result in delay-of-game penalties, he just kept slinging. Even late in the game, when he was ejected from the stadium for his antics, he threw one last touchdown pass from the parking lot.
Mahomes’ status for the week-nine game against the Minnesota Vikings is still unclear, but the quarterback remains in full panic mode as he stares into the void of inadequacy. Mahomes has been throwing passes from Kansas City into the endzones of Vikings practices in Minnesota in order to ready himself for the possibility that he will be barred from the entire Kansas City metropolitan area come Sunday’s game.
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