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No matter the outcome of Super Bowl LVII, Patrick Mahomes is arguably the best quarterback in football right now.

Anyone who needed evidence simply had to watch the Kansas City Chiefs QB’s gutsy performance against the Jacksonville Jaguars in the divisional round. The 27-year-old suffered what looked at first like a devastating ankle injury. But Mahomes powered through and led the Chiefs to a win. 

Will this injury be one that Chiefs fans should fear going forward? Looking at Mahomes’ injury history, one can see the story of a resilient player who defies the odds to overcome pain. 

Patrick Mahomes had a scary injury against the Jacksonville Jaguars

Mahomes injured his ankle early in the Chiefs’ divisional-round playoff game against Jacksonville. Mahomes opted to stay in the game, noticeably limping. Kansas City altered their play calling in the short term to favor the run. Backup Chad Henne even needed to come into the game for a spell. 

While the injury was scary at first, Mahomes and the Chiefs were able to manage an aggressive Jacksonville defense. They defeated the Jaguars with a balanced offensive attack from coach Andy Reid.

Mahomes did not shy away from making big throws. Then, the QB went into recovery mode. Now the question for Kansas City fans is this: How will Mahomes’ injury affect him going forward? 

Patrick Mahomes’ injury history

Quarterback Patrick Mahomes of the Kansas City Chiefs is sacked by outside linebacker Mack Wilson of the Cleveland Browns in the third quarter of the 2021 AFC Divisional Playoff game
Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes is sacked by Browns outside linebacker Mack Wilson in the 2021 AFC Divisional Playoff game | Jamie Squire/Getty Images

Mahomes has plenty of experience recovering from injuries. Draft Sharks compiled a detailed injury history for the quarterback, and he’s been hurt multiple times, including in the playoffs. Below is a brief summary of his career injuries: 

  • November 2014, concussion: Before being drafted, Mahomes suffered a concussion while playing for Texas Tech. 
  • October 2016, hand wrist fracture: Yet another injury happened to Mahomes before his NFL career began.
  • October 2019, dislocated knee: This occurred while attempting to convert a 4th and 1. 
  • January 2021, concussion and turf toe: In a divisional round game against Cleveland, Mahomes got seriously banged up in more ways than one.
  • December 2022, bruised foot: Earlier this season, Mahomes suffered this one during an early December tilt. 
  • January 2023, high ankle sprain: The aforementioned injury suffered against Jacksonville

Mahomes’ career can still be considered short at this point. But he’s been on the trainer’s table a decent amount despite this. It makes sense based on his style of play.

Mahomes is known for his creativity and scrambling ability in the pocket. He’s liable to take off and take risks. Any quarterback with his ability to improvise will no doubt suffer a few setbacks. 

Mahomes actually got better after he got hurt

It’s too soon to tell what the long-term ramifications of Mahomes’ ankle injury could be to his performance. But here’s what we do know: It didn’t slow him down against the Jaguars in the Divisional Round or the Cincinnati Bengals in the Conference Championship.

According to The Athletic, Mahomes posted an EPA (expected points added) per dropback of 0.45 after his injury. This metric evaluates quarterbacks’ playmaking ability. So what does this specific figure mean for Mahomes?

The Jaguars ramped up their blitz packages due to Mahomes’ hurt ankle. They blitzed on 43.8% of his dropbacks in the game’s second half. If you look at the EPA per dropback for other NFL quarterbacks in the regular season, Mahomes’ total would have put him at ninth overall. That’s good company. 

While the Chiefs will have to monitor Mahomes closely, there’s no doubt the quarterback looks to be managing the injury well.