The first meeting between two of the NFL’s young stunner quarterbacks — who also happen to be the two best African-American pigskin-slingers in the game right now — provided an athletic and cultural rush for fans on Sunday.
A hobbled Patrick Mahomes (19-35 273 yards, 3TD, 1 pick) and his 4-1 Kansas City Chiefs team went up against red-hot Deshaun Watson (280 yards passing, 1 TD and 2 picks) and the surging Houston Texans, who entered Arrowhead with a 3-2 record.
Mahomes re-aggravated an ankle injury suffered the previous week, limiting his abilities, especially his deadly ability to make plays while scrambling outside the pocket. That, along with injuries to his top two receivers, have compromised the explosive Chiefs offense.
This play was the game.#Chiefs QB Patrick Mahomes appears to re-injure his ankle and also smacks his head off the turf.
Before: 10/16, 189 yards, 2 TDs (about 20 mins. of game time)
After: 9/19, 84 yards, 1 TD, 1 INT (about 40 mins. game time) pic.twitter.com/ZqY0b2dTE1
— Pete Sweeney (@pgsween) October 14, 2019
This, coupled with the fact that the Chiefs defense couldn’t stop a nosebleed, and the franchise is looking a little suspect after appearing to look like a runaway favorite to make the Super Bowl just a few weeks ago.
The Chiefs “unstoppable” offense had 2 turnovers and seven points on its final six drives, while the Texans turned up in the fourth quarter, clamped down on D and mustered 8 points to nail down the win.
Watson is finally grabbing the spotlight after being overshadowed by guys such as Mahomes, Russell Winston and Lamar Jackson.
Last week he threw for 5 TD passes. This week he made every clutch play en route to beating one of the NFL’s darling squads and the anointed heir to Tom Brady’s throne as The GOAT.
If we’re going to talk about Patrick Mahomes as an MVP candidate — and we are, he’s awesome — it’s time to talk about #Texans QB Deshaun Watson the same way. Huge win taking down KC in Arrowhead.
— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) October 13, 2019
After his last two games, people are finally recognizing Watson.
He’s slowly moving out of the shadows and into the forefront of the minds of football fans. It’s not his fault that he caught Mahomes Jr. in a compromised state on their first go-round. Watson had to come from behind in that game and his team is far from a completed product, but after his performances so far, we can no longer exclude Watson from the conversation when discussing potential NFL MVPs.
MVP candidates: Russell Wilson, Patrick Mahomes, Deshaun Watson, Aaron Rodgers, Christian McCaffrey.
— ProFootballTalk (@ProFootballTalk) October 14, 2019
The Texans would be on the outside of the playoff picture looking in without Watson.
When he’s on the field, the Texans have a chance to beat anybody on any given Sunday, and if he continues his current state of play, we just might see him under center in Miami on Super Bowl Sunday.