Had the Kansas City Chiefs defeated the Tennessee Titans on Sunday, the play of the game would have been the 63-yard touchdown jump-pass from quarterback Patrick Mahomes to rookie wide receiver Mecole Hardman.
Mahomes jumped off one foot — his left — to see over the defensive line and find the rookie.
“I have actually been working on it quite a bit with (quarterbacks) coach (Mike) Kafka, and in the offseason, in kind of throwing it,” said Mahomes. “That’s another part of how I get torque. Mecole ran a great route. I had to throw it before he even broke, and he ran it exactly how I wanted him to, and that is because of repetition. Once you get the ball in those guys’ hands, they can make plays out of it.”
The fact that Mahomes has rehearsed such a throw should be no surprise by now. Similar to the jump-pass, Mahomes throws no-look and left-handed passes in practice, and that is why he is able to dial up magic while showing no hesitation.
In the fan’s eye, it is something he or she has never seen before. But for Mahomes, it’s debuting just another weapon in his repertoire.
On this occasion, Hardman scurried away to put the Chiefs up 29-20 in the fourth quarter.
“I’d never gotten anything like that,” said Hardman. “I thought he was just behind there, I (had) just seen the ball. I ain’t never caught a jump pass like that.”
The play did not surprise Hardman.
“That’s Pat, man. That’s Pat Mahomes,” said Hardman. “I think that’s all you got to say. He’s Pat, that’s what he do. He maneuvers in the pocket, he makes throws that people can’t make. I think he made his name known for doing stuff like that.”
Of course, the Titans would come back to defeat the Chiefs, 35-32. But in isolation, the play is just another magic Mahomes moment to add to our list.