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Mahomes Praises MVS on Fourth Down Call

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NFL Senior Writer Peter King interviewed Kansas City Chiefs Quarterback Patrick Mahomes on his weekly podcast today. The exchange yielded an interesting comment about the infamous fourth and one play that extended the Chiefs’ game-winning overtime drive.

By now, you’ve seen the NFL film’s recap of Super Bowl LVIII on the game’s most pivotal play. Facing a fourth down with less than a yard, Kansas City Chiefs Head Coach Andy Reid called a timeout to discuss the play.

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If Kansas City failed to convert fourth down, the San Francisco 49ers would have been Super Bowl Champions. What happened next changed the game’s outcome and added to the legend of Patrick Mahomes.

However, in discussing the game-changing moment in overtime, Mahomes said the idea to run the run option call didn’t come from the head coach, but an unlikely source.

“I wish I could take all the credit,” Mahomes said. “It was kind of crazy, so we were going through our plays. We were trying to decide whether to run or pass, and we had a couple of run plays dialed up, and we were trying to find that perfect play. I was thinking of passes because I wanted to pass it, obviously, and have the ball in my hand. MVS came up to me on the side, and he said, let’s go with ‘Slot Keys’. Which is wild because it’s not a play designed for him it’s designed for Travis (Kelce) and Rashee (Rice).”

The result, ‘Slot Keys,’ was a success. In taking the shotgun snap, Mahomes faked the ball to Pacheco, which caused Nick Bosa to crash inward. Kelce took his corner outward, and Mahomes ran through a massive gap in the defense for a first down. That singular play deflated the 49ers and fueled the Chiefs game-winning touchdown drive a few minutes later.

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Mahomes appears at the 23-minute mark.

The fact that Marquez Valdez-Scantling, who caught a touchdown pass from Mahomes in the third quarter suggested a play that hadn’t been called all year, nor was it designed for him, was incredibly insightful. He saw how hard the 49ers were biting on Pacheco. When Mahomes heard the idea, he was all for the triple-option play.

Had he not made that suggestion, I wonder if the Chiefs converted that fourth down. The odds were favorable that Mahomes would have made whatever play was called, but that snap was Super Bowl sudden death for Kansas City, and Mahomes delivered.

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The best thing about Mahomes is his willingness to praise others on the team. Even though he’s the best player in the NFL, he never views himself above any of his teammates. He knows his success is a culmination of those around him, the coaches, and the commitment by all to win snaps.

In overtime, the Chiefs won all the snaps and are Back-to-Back Super Bowl Champions because of it.

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