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Mike Holmgren talks about coaching a gunslinger (cc: Patrick Mahomes)

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Super Bowl week on radio row is fun because there are a ton of current and former NFL players and coaches walking around just waiting to be interviewed. Soren Petro of 810 WHB caught Super Bowl winning coach Mike Holmgren for a few minutes this week.

There are a couple of ties to the Chiefs here. First, Andy Reid was on Holmgren’s staff in Green Bay. Second, they coached Brett Favre in Green Bay and Patrick Mahomes is often compared to Favre as a gunslinger. It’s that gunslinging talk from Holmgren that I found interesting.

“Brett and I, after one season we were 9-7, we started out 9-7, 9-7 but we went to the playoffs. We have a season ending exit interview and I said I want you to work on these things and think about these things before next year. One, we’re going to eliminate this play, and these interceptions and these kinds of wild plays. And he goes, Mike, that’s how I play, that’s my game.

“I said OK, now, we’re 9-7, we’ve been 9-7, do you want to stay 9-7 or do you want to get to the Super Bowl? He goes I want to get to the Super Bowl. It was a loaded question. I said OK, if you want to get there you need to work with me on this and do these things.

“To Brett’s credit, and he was the gunslinger of all gunslingers, he did that. He disciplined himself and became, in my opinion, along with maturity, a better quarterback and got us to the Super Bowl and went on to have a great career.”

The last line is key:

“If you have the guy who’s talented enough physically, I think you can change some of that wildness.”

That’s what Andy Reid and the Chiefs think with Mahomes. He had some of the same gunslinger attributes where he thinks he can make any throw which can be a good thing and a bad thing. However, I was impressed in his Week 17 game by how few awful decisions he had. He did throw a pick but I guess I expected him to be wilder. I’m seeing that as Reid’s coaching showing up which is a very good thing.