Patrick Mahomes exploded in 2018, his first year as a starter, throwing 50 touchdowns to become the MVP favorite.
Mahomes was a high school baseball and football star and nearly chose baseball, with an offer to turn pro.
Mahomes instead chose football, became a college star, rose up NFL draft boards, and broke out this year to become the most exciting player in football.
The 23-year-old Kansas City Chiefs quarterback was something of an unknown coming into his first season as a starter, but quickly announced himself one of the future stars of the NFL.
Mahomes’ journey mirrors Stephen Curry’s in the NBA Mahomes was the son of a major league pitcher and grew up with unbelievable arm talent. After an offer to play pro baseball, Mahomes chose football, rose to college stardom, climbed up draft boards, and got taken in the first round of the 2017 draft by the Chiefs.
In his first season as a starter, Mahomes threw for over 5,000 yards with 50 touchdowns, leading the NFL. He’s the favorite for MVP and has produced more jaw-dropping highlights than any other player in the league. He’s a must-watch player who’s only just getting started.
He told Wickersham that he never really got his name out on the football circuit.
Still, he turned down the chance to go play baseball. Mahomes told Mellinger that he told teams he wanted a $2.5 million bonus to play baseball, a number he made up to dissuade teams. He still was drafted in the 37th round by the Detroit Tigers.
Mahomes ended up at Texas Tech and got some luck his freshman year when starting quarterback Davis Webb got injured. Mahomes had 16 touchdowns and 4 interceptions as a freshman.
The Chiefs were enamored with Mahomes, with Mike Veach, the Chiefs co-director of player personnel, forming a tight bond with Mahomes agent before the draft. Veach kept daily tabs on Mahomes, gauging his market and figuring out ways to get Mahomes.
On draft night, the Chiefs traded two first-round picks and a third-round pick to move up in the draft and take Mahomes.
Mahomes didnt show his incredible potential in his rookie year because he didnt play!
Mahones was firmly behind veteran quarterback Alex Smith (who had one of his best seasons in 2017), playing just the final game of the regular season with the Chiefs’ playoff spot already locked up.
But behind the scenes, Mahomes was making an impression on his teammates.
“I know there’s a chance I could make those throws in a game,” he said. “You want to practice this stuff. You don’t want the first time you do it to be in a game.”
His arm also became the subject of fascination during the season.
Mahomes’ baseball training seems to have helped him become a different type of thrower than most other quarterbacks, from the way he throws to the trajectory of his arm and ball.
Mahomes warms up with the long toss, like baseball players. During warmups, you might casually see him throw 90-yard passes.
No matter the outcome, its clear Mahomes has a bright future in the league and is soon to be one of the most popular faces in American sports.