Patrick Mahomes is making mistakes at an alarming clip.
Context is important. But let’s not explain away his mistakes.
Yes, it’s only training camp. It’s only the second week of training camp. Mahomes should be just fine, so long as he learns from these early mistakes. But there’s more context. Via ESPN, Mahomes has thrown seven interceptions in six days of the Kansas City Chiefs’ practices. He’s thrown six of those interceptions in the three padded, contact practices, which are more meaningful.
Interceptions can be a good outcome for a play in practice, if that mistake is corrected in time for Week 1. Seven interceptions means seven opportunities to make adjustments. But Mahomes’ errors are piling up.
“I know people wrote about the interceptions at the beginning of camp. I don’t care about that stuff. I want him to test the offense,” Andy Reid told reporters, via KCTV’s Tom Martin. “… If you don’t have the intestinal fortitude to go test it, you’re going to be one of those quarterbacks that checks it down all the time and that’s not what it’s all about.”
Interceptions are not what it’s all about either. Playing quarterback is about finding a middle ground in risk management. So far, Mahomes hasn’t found that sweet spot.
But there’s good news: he’s got time. It’s not doomsday in Kansas City.
Mahomes is not alone either. Chicago is hosting its own version of Pick Fest 2018, headlined by Mitch Trubisky. But Mahomes doesn’t want to keep company with Trubisky. And Reid would surely feel better if Mahomes was “testing” the offense without these errors.
The second-year signal-caller can get away with these mistakes during training camp. In fact, this is why training camp exists — it creates a space for players to learn from their errors. But this isn’t the way the Mahomes and the Chiefs wanted to get rolling.
Mahomes needs to stop throwing the ball to the defense.