Wednesday Night O/T: Should Mahomes have started the playoff game in 2017?

 41 replies

Welcome to AG’s nightly Open Thread, drop in and join a conversation, or start one yourself.

Of course with the benefit of hindsight the answer is obviously yes. Worst case scenario we still lose. But even without that benefit should Reid and the rest of the organization benched Alex Smith in favor of Mahomes after seeing his performance against the Broncos?

On the one hand, Smith had one of the best seasons of his career. Despite a bit of a slump in the middle of the year, he managed to finish strong and clinch the division with time to spare. He also was a respected leader in the locker room, having the 3rd most wins of any quarterback from 2013-2017 (behind only Brady and Russell Wilson). Mahomes was a rookie with virtually no NFL starting experience, and especially going an inferior team like the Titans there’s a fear that he could have gave away an otherwise winnable game.

On the other hand, even in his one game of action Mahomes showed why the team was so excited about him. Even playing with backups he was able to effectively move the ball down the field while repeatedly making something out of nothing. It’s hard to imagine Mahomes only managing 21 points in that game, considering that in his 36 starts he’s scored 21 or fewer just once. Yes he was still a rookie with just one start, but he still looked incredible in that one start.

Overall I think I would have started Mahomes, if only because I think you’re more likely to win the Super Bowl by taking risks.

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probablyamistake
probablyamistake
06/03/2020 10:41 pm

Everything worked out just fine. Alex was a solid NFL QB that played for a great NFL coach that felt he deserved one more shot. Didn’t get it done, the rest is history. I remember you from another place Wustl, you never did like Alex, which is fine. Like I said, it worked out just fine.

BleedingRedAndGold
Reply to  probablyamistake
06/03/2020 11:17 pm

I don’t think it was dislike so much as undervaluing the unquantifiable factors in that. He’s a numbers guy, after all, and while I’m better than average (I think with a second run through calculus and I’d master it), I’m much more of a psych guy than Tony by simple necessity.
 
And as a troubleshooting electronics tech, I understand how systems work rather better than him. I didn’t study Deming in-depth, but I grasped many of his philosophies immediately. I grok systems far better than most. So an utterly different perspective, but what he deserves credit for is for not being one of the keyboard warriors in the Smith Wars.
 
His evidence wasn’t wrong nor his words false, they were just incomplete.

probablyamistake
probablyamistake
Reply to  BleedingRedAndGold
06/04/2020 8:17 am

To be honest, the AlexWars are what kept me with this group. It was fun, and nobody died!!! 🙂

ForeverRanger91
ForeverRanger91
06/03/2020 9:19 pm

One thing I think a lot of people should realize is that police brutality happens to all races. I want to make one thing clear. I stand with my black brothers and sisters with pride and I think we as Caucasians should use our privilege (yes it is a thing) to make sure that they are heard and understood. I actually have had a cop reach for his holster on me once during a stop. Granted it was my own idiocy because I was reaching for a cigarette in the dark but there was flamable liquid on the floorboard so it was either that or the car goes up in flames.

BleedingRedAndGold
Reply to  ForeverRanger91
06/03/2020 9:56 pm

I agree, I’ve had a gun to my head when all they had me on at the time was speeding and following that doing my community service (DUI, but they determined that after the gun was put away) I saw a pack of them drag a loud, obnoxious non-Black drunk out of the tank, and he was battered and bloody when they dragged him back in.
 
But it’s minorities that actually get targeted, the rest of us just fall victim to the same attitudes – and the pleas of minorities are often scoffed at. “All the damage is the (minority) protesters’ fault! They’re the problem, not our clean-cut police!” Also “4th Amendment? That damn sneaky defense lawyer got him off on a technicality because he love, LOVES crime!”
 
Exaggerated? Yes. Essentially untrue? Not a tiny little bit, I read a snippet of that today.
 

Last edited 1 month ago by BleedingRedAndGold
saints_chiefsfan1979
saints_chiefsfan1979
Reply to  ForeverRanger91
06/03/2020 11:34 pm

no, white privlege is NOT a thing. Let me ask you this, who has more privilege. Jay Z’s kids, P Diddy’s kids or a white kid in a trailer park being raised by a single mother. I rest my case

saints_chiefsfan1979
saints_chiefsfan1979
Reply to  Tony Sommer
06/03/2020 11:35 pm

The guy doesn’t know where he is. If he gets elected what we have seen for the last 3 months will be standard

ForeverRanger91
ForeverRanger91
06/03/2020 8:40 pm

Drew Brees just went from loved to hated in New Orleans in no time flat.

BleedingRedAndGold
Reply to  ForeverRanger91
06/03/2020 8:45 pm

Yeah, I normally avoid yelling angrily and even mildly violent acts, but I’d like to grab him by the front of his shirt and yell in his face ‘what the fresh, undying, continual knowledge of hell were you thinking was going to happen when you said that, praise and roses?’ while slapping him back and forth across the face. Good thing it’s a long walk from here. OTOH, there’s also a much more convenient river route right nearby here. Wouldn’t even have to drive a half hour.

ForeverRanger91
ForeverRanger91
Reply to  BleedingRedAndGold
06/03/2020 8:47 pm

People are coming to his defense with saying that he has done a lot for the city. You can do a lot for a city and still be a dumbass.

pompano
pompano
Reply to  BleedingRedAndGold
06/03/2020 9:03 pm

I don’t like flag burning, would never do it, but recognize it as protected free speech. You can agree with someone’s stance and disagree with thier expression thereof.
I never understood the uproar over kneeling, or burning.
FYI- POTUS wants to make burning illegal again with hs new SCOTUS

BleedingRedAndGold
Reply to  BleedingRedAndGold
06/03/2020 10:02 pm

Since apparently the hyperbole of taking a kayak from here to N’awlins apparently must have caused that DV, let me add that as of right now I can’t drive our car and have nowhere to even store a boat.
 
I was simply expressing my emotions for a moment, blowing off steam. And if you DVed me for simply saying I felt like that, that’s too damn bad.

Leaf
Reply to  BleedingRedAndGold
06/03/2020 10:31 pm

Personally I thought your comment was funny. It was pretty over the top, and I can’t say I disagree with the sentiment. But then again, I’m a pretty fucked up guy.

Last edited 1 month ago by Leaf
saints_chiefsfan1979
saints_chiefsfan1979
Reply to  BleedingRedAndGold
06/03/2020 11:37 pm

yep, loving America is controversial at this point

Leaf
Reply to  saints_chiefsfan1979
06/04/2020 8:46 am

Just because you are mad or disgusted at something doesn’t necessarily mean you don’t love it. I’m get mad and disgusted at my kids all the time but I still love them and would fight to the death to protect them. But on the flip side I will call them out when they do something wrong and try to help correct the issue.

gonzangkc11
gonzangkc11
06/03/2020 8:30 pm

All the craziness. Remember. “one love” by bob marley lyrics
https://youtu.be/CCK3luJOHho

ForeverRanger91
ForeverRanger91
06/03/2020 8:24 pm

If Smith didn’t rebound after the Giants and Bills games then yes. He rebounded decently and deserved to start what was his last game as a Chief. Shit I was calling for Mahomes to start after the Giants game and you know how I am (I called the comeback in 2015).

BleedingRedAndGold
Reply to  ForeverRanger91
06/03/2020 8:33 pm

Dunno if you read down that far, but I had a few things to say about the reasonability of the drop-everything-and-start-Mahomes-after-DEN belief that all that mattered was his talent. The other players, the lack of any real sort of a game plan. no continuity, confused locker room and more. I mean, I’d like to believe he’d win, too, but to take it seriously? Can’t, you have to sweep far too much aside to just say “He woulda won it”.

pompano
pompano
Reply to  BleedingRedAndGold
06/03/2020 8:36 pm

Troof

BleedingRedAndGold
Reply to  pompano
06/03/2020 8:39 pm

One of the handier mental tools I have picked up: If someone says “should”, double-check, there likely some wishful thinking involved in the message. Keeps me from wasting a lot of valuable thinking time, at least.

BleedingRedAndGold
Reply to  BleedingRedAndGold
06/03/2020 8:36 pm

P.S. None of that should be construed as me actually arguing with Plus. Disagreeing? Sure, but I felt no anger or hostility at the time.
 
P.P.S. (And I called the nature of the Sweeny takeover almost exactly 2 years ago, lol)

ForeverRanger91
ForeverRanger91
Reply to  BleedingRedAndGold
06/03/2020 8:38 pm

Also there was no way that Reid was going to start Mahomes in a playoff game as a rookie unless Alex got hurt.

BleedingRedAndGold
Reply to  ForeverRanger91
06/03/2020 8:39 pm

See my other comment below.

pompano
pompano
Reply to  ForeverRanger91
06/03/2020 8:43 pm

Also troof.

slackator
slackator
06/03/2020 7:03 pm

We knew what we didn’t have in Smith so I will go to the ground screaming yes we should have started Mahomes because we knew the results with Smith and the Super Bowl is worth the risk of an unknown

BleedingRedAndGold
Reply to  slackator
06/03/2020 7:19 pm

Having a full-on do-over’s very effective for that. As far as hindsight goes, it’s understandable, but Reid didn’t make a mistake or bad decision on who to start. We all just want to watch again and see if Pat could manage it in spite of the offense not being any more ready for him than he was for them.
 
One more thing, that DEN game? He played a really good game, all things considered, but he didn’t throw a single TD pass, either. He didn’t establish that he was ready to make his second start in the playoffs.
 
Don’t get me wrong, I like me some speculation and forecasting, and even idle dreaming about mighta-beens. Problem is that I’m a big fan of alternate history, and there the worst examples are when the author indulges in wishful thinking and handwavium to make it all work out the way he wants. The best, however, change one significant fact and then follow the historical forces involved play out in accordance with a realistic progression. It’s a simple difference between ‘this would obviously happen’ and ‘what would actually happen’, but the gap’s tremendous.

gonzangkc11
gonzangkc11
06/03/2020 6:19 pm

No, bruno mars story/update today?
Just kidding, LOL 🙂

MasterChief
MasterChief
Reply to  Tony Sommer
06/03/2020 7:17 pm

comment image

gonzangkc11
gonzangkc11
Reply to  MasterChief
06/03/2020 8:30 pm

Lol

BleedingRedAndGold
06/03/2020 6:16 pm

Sure, it’s an easy decsion, but only from hindsight. Saying “Reid should have” from our perspective has no real meaning.
 
But if we are re-writing history then IMO Smith going down with a high-ankle sprain, the sort of thing that’d effectively IR him in the playoffs, things might have turned out better for everyone, himself included. By extending the run the injury’s more than a butterfly effect, it significantly alters the timeline from there, so his leg injury cannot be assumed to follow inevitably after. Same thing with what I said about the Forward Progress call not happening and DJ’s fumble counted, because it was only after that when Kelce took a shot to the head. But even if we had only scored three after that, the play where he was injured couldn’t have happened the exact same way.
 
And if it were intentional and someone tried it on a different play, they might have been flagged and ejected instead of what actually happened. (Can’t recall if there was a flag, but there was no ejection).

HawaiiFiveOh
HawaiiFiveOh
06/03/2020 5:35 pm

Nah. It would not have mattered. The defense still sucked.

Plus Name and Plus Name
Plus Name and Plus Name
Reply to  HawaiiFiveOh
06/03/2020 5:50 pm

Oh it absolutely mattered. Mahomes would not have lost that game.

Leaf
Reply to  Plus Name and Plus Name
06/03/2020 6:22 pm

You don’t know that. The refs were horrible and the titans were head hunting. Mahomes isn’t unbeatable, and there’s the possibility of an injury.

Last edited 1 month ago by Leaf
BleedingRedAndGold
Reply to  Leaf
06/03/2020 6:34 pm

I don’t know that they were literally headhunting in that game, though it could have been a lone individual seeing an opportunity to do so, by impulse or even planned intent, and that still doesn’t rule out the possibility that it was accidental or carelessness on the D guy’s part. That said, I do suspect that a little headhunting may well have been involved, I just won’t have a firm opinion with so little to go on.
 
The rest I agree with, and I’ll add this much more: Alex Smith didn’t lose that game for us. He didn’t win it, but he was also disadvantaged by a hostile ref and losing the most important cog in his offense in Kelce right when he needed him the most.
 
But then, I bet some still believe that after putting up a ton of points in the first half of the Colts game and losing half or more of his premium weapons to injury, it was his fault that the D couldn’t stop the Colts in the 2nd, so I dunno.

Plus Name and Plus Name
Plus Name and Plus Name
Reply to  Leaf
06/03/2020 6:43 pm

There is always a possibility of injury. That doesn’t mean that Mahomes wasn’t more talented though. Of course if Brady had gotten injured on any of the Pats super bowl runs they might not have won. We can’t assume injury in any given game. What we can know is that Mahomes is vastly more talented than Smith.
 
Also, the defense did enough to win. The refs fucked them out of several key plays, but even still, they gave us a chance.

BleedingRedAndGold
Reply to  Plus Name and Plus Name
06/03/2020 7:09 pm

Point of order, please. Leaf isn’t the one who criticized the D in that game.
 
One more thing, and that is during Week 17 Reid, IIRC his OC, and most likely Smith himself spent primarily on the playoff game planning. To start Mahomes based on that single game, he’d have had to jerk the rub out from under his starter without warning and feverishly preparing a new one based on Mahomes and the plays he’s been in on at the installation.
 
Then there’s timing, communicating with the OL, coordinating the skill guys, reading the defense and more. – and for the most part he hadn’t played much with most of the starters returning. I find it hard to believe that at that point in time he was so much more talented than Smith none of it would have mattered to Mahomes. A little backyard football and he’d win.

Plus Name and Plus Name
Plus Name and Plus Name
Reply to  BleedingRedAndGold
06/03/2020 7:15 pm

I believe that wholeheartedly. I believe that Mahomes would still be a top 5 quarterback if he played backyard football on half of his plays. I also believe that Mahomes could have started the last 6 weeks of the season. He had already sat and learned enough.

BleedingRedAndGold
Reply to  Plus Name and Plus Name
06/03/2020 7:34 pm

Well, I won’t say what you belive is wrong and you should change your mind, but I can’t agree. Sure, i’d like a do-over on that game just to see what happened, but I can’t just go on blind faith and ignore practical realities. I mean, Pat was popular at that point, but if Reid had come out for the Denver locker room and announce that he’d just benched Smith in favor of his untested rookie you can’t just assume there wouldn’t be stress and split loyalties on the team back in there.
 
A lot of these handicaps are dependent on the rest of the offense’s ability to adjust to him, not just his own skill, so while you can believe he could overcome them just by being awesome in ’18 and then brushing them all aside isn’t something I can find plausible.
 
And by “he’d learned enough”, does that place you in the camp that believes that Alex’s contributions to his development were trivial? Because both parts of AR-15 have been praising his help to the moon, and I don’t understand why so many Chiefs fans keep insisting they’re both lying to Chiefs fans about that. Why? All three are extremely honest, high-character people, so why would they tell such huge lies?
 
Not an accusation, just a question, but I’ve gotten thoroughly sick of that rhetoric. It’s slander in the non-legal sense, a lie about lying to justify a passionate belief without factual basis.

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