Patrick Mahomes is making a run at Tom Brady's legacy of excellence

Patrick Mahomes is making a run at Tom Brady's legacy of excellence

Tom Brady and Patrick Mahomes are the alpha and omega of NFL supremacy at the NFL’s most important position. With every passing season, Mahomes creeps closer and closer to Brady’s legacy of excellence. There’s only so much Mahomes can do in one Super Bowl though.

Super Bowl rings don’t tell the entire story though. If it weren’t for Dee Ford jumping offsides in the 2019 AFC Title Game, Mahomes would have secured his first Big Game appearance against the Rams in Super Bowl LIII.

Even with a third Super Bowl win in six seasons as a starter on his resumè, Mahomes would still be only halfway to Brady’s career playoff wins or his Lombardi Trophy tally. He already has the name recognition.

Mahomes crafts touchdown drives together with the divine craftiness of Michelangelo painting the Sistine Chapel. He combines a sharp cognitive adaptability to process under pressure with a skill for procrastinating on the run until he’s ready to unleash bullet-speed velocity via a deeper trick bag of throwing angles we’ve ever seen in a single specimen.

Brady was a precision-based STEM professor in his pocket and a pseudo-madman when it came to preserving his body through the TB-12 method. Arguably the most scintillating throw of Brady’s career was him tossing his seventh Lombardi trophy to a second boat.

Inside the pocket, Brady was a taskmaster. As a drop-back artist, Mahomes has more range than Brady. Under four-man pressure, and disguise blitzes, Mahomes is as proficient as they come inside the pocket, but what separates him is his virtuoso playmaking ability outside the pocket or when forced to go off-script.

The debate between them rages on for now as a choice between longevity and an athlete’s peak performance. If we’re whittling athletes down to their ability during their prime years, Mahomes is already closing in on Brady.

Mahomes probably won’t have the benefit of Andy Reid’s nuclear offensive engineering degree for the entirety of his 30s — which are still nearly two years away. However; TB12 never had a stretch as stellar as this.

Mahomes is the Randy Moss of signal callers to Brady’s Jerry Rice. Rice’s receiving records are completely out of reach as a result of him running up the numbers during his prime, and his sustained productivity into his 40s.

But with all that said, Moss was the single most destructive force we have ever seen at the wide receiver position. That describes Mahomes’ impact on the football world. The Air Raid product has been an H-Bomb since the moment he touched down with 10 touchdowns in his first two starts back in 2018.

There is a very good chance. Mahomes may never be interested in playing long enough to reach some of the astronomical records that Brady launched into orbit. But through his first seven seasons, Mahomes is stacking another level atop the QB hierarchy.

He has two more playoff wins, and a pair of MVPs at a point where Brady had none. Add in 7,000 more passing yards, 15 fewer interceptions, and 81 additional total touchdowns.

Through their first 17 playoff games, Mahomes is outpacing Brady by nearly 1,000 yards, 13 touchdowns, and five few turnovers. Mahomes’ blemish in Super Bowl LV was partially a result of a decimated Kansas City offensive line that left the Chiefs’ signal-caller scrambling for his life.

Brady is still winning the long arithmetic and Mahomes still has to crush a contemporary challenger in Joe Burrow, in the same vein as Brady kept knocking Peyton Manning out of the Super Bowl paint. However, like Moss, Mahomes has a pinnacle that few can even scratch.

Rice’s technical powers were unparalleled, but Moss’ ingenuity downfield on jump balls and the kinetic energy he generated on splash plays has never been duplicated.

That’s really the determining factor though. If Mahomes plays long enough, he will creep close to eclipsing Brady’s numbers. The Chiefs offense has regressed from supernova to administrative paperwork mode, but Mahomes has quite a head start. It’s a uniquely indomitable skill level that gives him an edge in the NFL’s GOAT wars. But first, he has to rip San Francisco’s heart out of its chest again.

Mahomes has done everything through his first seven seasons bigger and almost better than Brady did at that juncture. He’s just one Super Bowl ring behind a Young Brady. Mahomes’ killer instinct on the final two comeback drives of Super Bowl LIV against the Niners was as heartstopping as Brady was in 2002 against the Rams or Atlanta, but to retain the bragging rights, he’s got to do it again.

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About the Author

Anthony Barnett
Anthony is the author of the Science & Technology section of ANH.