Is Patrick Mahomes already the best QB ever? It’s not really a wild notion anymore
Greatness is happening with the NFL right now. Sports fans can be harsh in the moment on accepting the levels of dominance that are right in front of their very eyes, but something that is almost impossible to comprehend is happening. It sounds wild to say this about a 27-year-old player, especially a quarterback, but it’s fair to ask the question: Is Patrick Mahomes the best quarterback ever?
“Greatest” is impossible to parse, and so is “best” to a lesser degree, but this is a great time to pause and reflect on the unbelievable start that Mahomes has gotten to his career. Five straight AFC championship games, he just won his second MVP award and has a chance to add to his Super Bowl title collection with another win this weekend. Oh yeah, and he has three All-Pro selections, a Pro Bowl selection for every year that he’s played, and an Offensive Player of the Year award in 2018 — along with his first MVP award.
Say it with me now: That is crazy. No quarterback has been as dominant as Mahomes has been over the five-season start to his career. There’s no problem acknowledging that and quite frankly, it already vaults him into the category of the most accomplished quarterbacks that have ever stepped foot on a professional field. That part is true no matter how anyone feels about Mahomes — and logically, should have people willing to put him in the best of all time conversation already.
Longevity will push him out of this conversation for many people since his NFL career really only started in 2018, but unheard of production and accolades are still unheard of production and accolades. It shouldn’t take a 20-year career for people to respect and wrap their heads around what they’re seeing right now. If he can win one more somewhat random one-game sample this weekend and lock in a Super Bowl title, people will probably be more receptive to the idea that this 27-year old still very much in his prime is the best quarterback ever.
The larger sample shows that he has put up some unbelievable numbers so far. Mahomes has led the NFL in ESPN’s Quarterback Rating metric twice since 2018, has thrown for at least 37 touchdowns in four of his five seasons and has led the league in touchdown passes twice. One of these seasons, this season, was without the services of Tyreek Hill, who was shipped off to Miami in exchange for a first-round pick. Losing a player as dynamic as Hill would be a significant death blow for most teams to climb over. The Chiefs are still right where they want to be, in what has been somewhat of a retooling year for them.
The Atlas-level ability to carry an offense, the statistical dominance, the actual joy that comes from watching him play. Mahomes has hit that peak-LeBron James status where simply having him on the roster ensures that the Chiefs will be in championship contention — like five straight AFC championship games (all at home) and now three Super Bowl trips.
Mahomes is undoubtedly the best quarterback in the league today and he is so far ahead of his peers that it’s fair to bring the entire scope of NFL history into play. He’s the best there, too.