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Patrick Mahomes wants a legacy as a great quarterback, but a better person

Kansas City’s MVP quarterback is learning there is more to his life than football.

NFL: Kansas City Chiefs Training Camp Denny Medley-USA TODAY Sports

In an interview with CBS morning-show host Nate Burleson released on Monday, Kansas City Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes said that his NFL success is largely built on the influence of players like the late NBA star Kobe Bryant, whose interviews showed him how to make the game slow down.

“If you ever watch anything about Kobe,” noted Mahomes, “he always talks about the shots that he practices thousands and thousands of times to take once [or] take twice. So whenever those moments do come up during the game, it’s not like it’s the first time I’ve done it. I’ve prepared for that.

“I think that’s why it slows down. You see the highlights and everybody’s like, ‘Oh, it’s a highlight reel! He’s being Superman out there!’ But they don’t see that preparation.”

But the two-time NFL (and Super Bowl) MVP says he’s now reached the point in his life where other things are also becoming important to him.

“Being able to go home and see my daughter and see my son,” he noted, “I have a better understanding of being present and enjoying it. That translates to the football field. We’ve been on a heck of a run, but I’m trying to enjoy those moments — because I know it doesn’t last forever, even though we want it to.”

His new perspective as a father naturally leads him to a concern about how he is perceived.

“I want to be someone that the kids can look up to and say, ‘Hey, I wanna be like Patrick Mahomes.’” he said. “And I want parents to think, ‘Hey, that’s a guy that I want my kid to be like.’ When I’m on TV — or when I’m in the spotlight — I try to show off the right example.”

In another recent interview, Mahomes said that he would define the success of his NFL career not by his football accomplishments, but by whether he had any regrets about the way he did it. He told Burleson that includes what happens off the field, too.

“I [want to] always be remembered as a great quarterback,” he revealed, “but remembered more as a better person. That’s my goal. I want people to see the love that I have for the game of football, the love I have for my family [and] the love I have for being a role model.

“I think if they see that — and they remember me as that — I’ve done what I need to do in the game of football.”

Mahomes returns to the football part of his life on Tuesday, when he and the team’s other quarterbacks (and rookies) report to Kansas City’s 2023 training camp at Missouri Western State University in St. Joseph.

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