Kansas City Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes suffered a high-ankle sprain during the team's Divisional Round win over the Jacksonville Jaguars, as confirmed by Chiefs head coach Andy Reid on Monday during his usual Zoom press conference.
As Mahomes mentioned after the Chiefs' 27-20 win, he began treatment that night. Reid said he is doing OK. Mahomes plans to play against the Cincinnati Bengals this Sunday in the AFC Championship game.
"He told you guys — he mentioned it to you, that he's going to play," said Reid. "That's his mindset — and then we'll just take it day-by-day and see how he does.”
This is not the first time Mahomes has had to play through a high-ankle sprain, as he suffered the same injury in Week 1 of the 2019 season. The injury cost the quarterback some mobility, but Kansas City went 5-2 while he was working through it.
"I think this one isn't quite as bad as that one, but they're similar," said Reid. "Sore, but not quite the same."
That season, a dislocated kneecap in Week 7 against the Denver Broncos would force Mahomes out of the lineup for two games — also allowing time for the ankle to heal. He can't afford to miss any game time this time around — but if that’s what it takes, it does sound like Reid and the Chiefs are open to holding him out of practice this week.
"Yeah, possible. Yeah. [I] think so," said Reid of the chance Mahomes could play without practicing. "He's never done that, so I don't have the answer for you on that."
After Mahomes went to the locker room for X-rays on Saturday, backup Chad Henne entered in his place, putting together a critical 98-yard touchdown drive. Henne's third-and-3 pass to wide receiver Kadarius Toney looked awfully familiar to those at home.
The backup's comfort is very much by design, per Reid. And he has built the system so that Kansas City does not have to create multiple game plans.
"We try to keep open communication with the quarterbacks the best we can and then evaluate them," said Reid. "We've had Chad here a while, so we know the plays he likes and doesn't like. We also know the plays Pat likes and doesn't like. So we try to blend it and make sure we have plays that work for both of them."
On Mahomes, Reid continued to reiterate that he would know more after the first practice of the week on Wednesday. During AFC Championship week, the head coach will speak to the media daily, so Thursday's press conference will likely bring some clarity on Mahomes' status.