Plaschke: Patrick Mahomes is chasing Tom Brady for GOAT title

He was screaming. He was grimacing. This was dangerous.

Patrick Mahomes lay sprawled throughout the grass for just a few agonizing moments, then picked himself up and limped to the sideline.

He dropped on the bench. He closed his eyes. He lowered his head between his knees in frustration earlier than resting it on a coach’s shoulder in resignation.

With 1:33 left within the first half of Super Bowl LVII on Sunday at State Farm Stadium, the most-valuable-player season of the Kansas City Chiefs quarterback seemingly had collapsed into an unpleasant ending when his badly sprained proper ankle was twisted on the finish of a deal with by Philadelphia linebacker T.J. Edwards.

The Eagles would take a 10-point halftime lead. The Eagles would plan on going through backup Chad Henne within the second half. The Eagles’ followers had been singing about flying.

Mahomes was executed.

Then, improbably, unimaginably, stunningly, he wasn’t.

Then, together with his tongue wagging like Michael Jordan and his fist thrust within the air like Tom Brady, he was simply getting began.

In arguably essentially the most brilliantly resilient 90 minutes of soccer in Super Bowl historical past, Mahomes staggered out for the second half and proceeded to beat the Eagles with one leg tied behind his again.

He limped across the backfield lengthy sufficient to guide the Chiefs to a few touchdowns, then one way or the other sprinted up the center to arrange a game-winning area objective within the ultimate seconds of the Chiefs’ dramatic 38-35 victory.

Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes runs through the second half of Super Bowl LVII. Mahomes completed with 44 yards speeding in six carries in Kansas City’s 38-35 win.

(Godofredo A. Vasquez / Associated Press)

After which he as soon as once more screamed, this time in pleasure.

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“I told you all this week, there’s nothing that is going to keep me off this football field,” he instructed a bellowing Chiefs crowd throughout a Lombardi Trophy presentation full of shocked smiles and swirling confetti.

With a second Super Bowl championship in his six-season profession, there is also nothing that may maintain Mahomes from being ranked on the prime of his area.

He is the NFL’s best quarterback and the 27-year-old inheritor to the throne of the retiring Brady. He’s one of the best energetic soccer participant alive and is on a quick path to in the future supplanting Brady as the brand new GOAT.

Mahomes Alone.

That sounds loopy, however it’s additionally loopy to assume a one-legged quarterback could lead on a second-half comeback from a 10-point deficit in opposition to what was thought-about the NFL’s finest staff.

“To be down to a team like that and come back and win the game … you’ll look back at this game for the rest of your life,” Mahomes stated.

You’ll first look again at this sport and assume: For the Chiefs, it was really hopeless. It was hopeless 22 days earlier, when Mahomes’ ankle was badly sprained in an AFC divisional-round playoff sport in opposition to the Jacksonville Jaguars. He briefly was changed in that sport by Henne. He survived an AFC championship sport in opposition to the Cincinnati Bengals and even arrange the successful area objective with a five-yard run, however he was nonetheless limping. The degree of his Super Bowl readiness was fully unsure.

At least, unsure for everybody however him.

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“I felt really good …” he stated of Sunday.

“… Until I reaggravated it a little,” he added.

Reaggravated? A little bit?

Mahomes stumbled into the locker room at halftime having thrown for 89 yards and one landing whereas having run 9 performs within the earlier hour and a half.

The Eagles’ large guys had been dominating. Their quarterback, Jalen Hurts, was dealing. The Chiefs’ protection couldn’t get off the sphere.

And now Mahomes couldn’t stroll.

“There was a lot of soreness. … It didn’t feel good,” Mahomes stated. “But I was leaving it all out there.”

Kansas City Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes grimaces on the bench after an injury during the first half of Super Bowl LVII

Kansas City quarterback Patrick Mahomes grimaces on the bench after reinjuring his ankle through the first half.

(Charlie Riedel / Associated Press)

He left all of it on the market instantly, on the second half’s first drive, Mahomes finishing scrambling passes and one way or the other working for 14 yards as he led the Chiefs downfield right into a one-yard landing run by Isiah Pacheco to shut the hole.

The Eagles responded with a field-goal drive, however Mahomes got here again and went six for six on a drive that ended with a five-yard landing cross to Kadarius Toney to ultimately give the Chiefs a 28-27 lead.

By now people had been asking: Is he actually doing this? Can he actually do that?

“He’s always strong,” Toney stated of Mahomes. “He never shows weakness. He’s a true fighter.”

After Toney set a Super Bowl file with a 65-yard punt return, Mahomes wanted simply three performs to toss a four-yard landing cross to Skyy Moore and improve the lead.

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But then the Eagles and Hurts rolled again downfield to tie the rating on two runs by Hurts, and Mahomes had 5:15 to one-foot his staff to victory.

Was he even interested by the ankle? The reply is seemingly no.

“In the Super Bowl, you don’t worry about that until the offseason,” he stated. “I fought through.”

The battle on the game-winning drive was notably fierce. He linked on passes to JuJu Smith-Schuster and Travis Kelce after which wowed tens of millions by out of the blue deciding to run 26 yards up the center, after which he limped to the sideline.

Call it one of many best mad dashes in Super Bowl historical past.

Mahomes known as it enjoyable.

“It’s like a little kid winning a prize at the fair,” he stated.

Kansas City Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes (15) is interviewed by Terry Bradshaw.

Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes is interviewed by Fox Sports’ Terry Bradshaw after Super Bowl LVII.

(Steve Luciano / Associated Press)

Moments after Harrison Butker kicked a 27-yard area objective to win the sport, Mahomes smiled like a little bit child as he walked — gingerly — into the Chiefs’ celebrating scrum.

“We fought to the very end,” Mahomes stated. “That’s all you can ask.”

But no one battled like him.

In the primary half, he was eight for 13 for 89 yards and a landing.

In the second half, after the brand new twist, he was an incredible 13 for 14 for 93 yards and two touchdowns.

With the victory, he turns into the primary participant to win a passing yardage title and a Super Bowl in the identical season. He turns into the primary participant to win a regular-season MVP award and a Super Bowl in the identical season in 23 years. And he simply received his second Super Bowl MVP in 4 years.

“MVPat!” Kelce shouted to the Fox cameras afterward. “MVPat!”

And right here’s guessing there are extra to return. Lots extra.

“I’m not gonna say dynasty yet,” Mahomes shouted to the group. “We’re not done.”

No, he isn’t. And no, he wasn’t.