If Patrick Mahomes is out for awhile, what will the Chiefs do at quarterback?

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Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes has a knee injury. If he can’t play for a few weeks or longer, what will Kansas City do at quarterback?

Matt Moore played capably on Thursday night, in large part because his defense suffocated a Denver offense that went into a shell after scoring a touchdown on the first drive of the game. No other quarterbacks are on the 53-man roster, and Kyle Shurmur currently is on the practice squad.

The Chiefs host the Packers and Vikings before hitting the road to face the Titans and Chargers, before the bye. Will it be Moore and Shurmur, or will they try to make a move?

There aren’t many moves that can be made, in large part because there aren’t enough quarterbacks to go around.

It makes sense to look for quarterbacks with ties to Andy Reid and/or those who have experience in his offense, but there just aren’t many out there.

Potentially available veterans include Ryan Fitzpatrick (who just reclaimed the starting job in Miami, but could be available), Marcus Mariota (who was just benched in Tennessee and has beaten the Chiefs in a playoff game, and could be available), Paxton Lynch (who likely will be waived sooner than later by the Steelers), and Cody Kessler (who was recently cut by the Patriots).

Nick Foles was drafted by Reid in 2012 and played for the Chiefs in 2016, but he’s on injured reserve — and he has significant guaranteed money in 2020. Eli Manning is rotting on the bench in New York, but he has a no-trade clause. Washington has Case Keenum and Colt McCoy, one of whom could be traded, in theory.

The strategy surely will hinge on the amount of time Mahomes will miss. That will be determined when he has a Friday MRI on his injured knee. Adrenaline, youth, and/or athletic arrogance allowed him to walk off the field after his kneecap ended up in a spot where kneecaps shouldn’t be; the real question is whether and to what extent ligaments were damaged as the kneecap moved out and back in.

If it’s a short-term absence due to the knee (he also has an ankle injury), maybe the Chiefs stick with the Moore and Shurmur show. If the 2018 NFL MVP will be out more than a week or two, a decision will have to be made.

Then there’s Colin Kaepernick. Owner Clark Hunt has said he’d have “no hesitation” to sign Kaepernick, but that was more than two years ago. Would Hunt and/or his football people embrace a player who last played in January 2017?

Again, the question of whether the Chiefs need to craft an emergency strategy depends on whether Mahomes’ injury is significant. If it is, the Chiefs will have an important decision to make.

Whatever they do, there’s a huge difference between Mahomes and whoever would take his place. Which means that the defense will need to continue to play like it did tonight in Denver, or the Chiefs will have no shot at getting to the postseason, 5-2 record through seven games notwithstanding.

63 responses to “If Patrick Mahomes is out for awhile, what will the Chiefs do at quarterback?

  1. If you are going to list backups and then Kaepernick, you should say they should go after Gabbert. You know, since Gabbert beat Kaepernick out of a job in SF.

  2. Just stop it. You’ve beaten this into submission. No one wants an awful QB that hasn’t played in years. He was terrible then. Plenty of other stop gap QBs that are better.

  3. I had a similar injury 20 years ago and it took me 10 weeks to heal…Then again, medicine has made big advancements since then.

    BTW…never had a problem with it since.

  4. Going from Mahomes to Kaepernick would be pretty lol. When in doubt and other factors are even always grab the guy from the Patriots. But if trading for another teams expendable veteran I say go for Cam.

  5. I was reading through waiting to hear how this would somehow lead to a Colin Kaepernick reference and there it was…we get it but its time to move on. 32 businesses all decided individually that he’s not worth the risk/cost and thats ok. Capitalism enables these guys to make nine figures playing sports, they have to accept the downsides as well.

    Also, hoping its not serious for Mahomes.

  6. If I’ve learned anything reading PFT over the years, it’s that Colin Kaepernick is the greatest QB to ever play the game. He’d be a huge upgrade over Patrick Mahomes. C’mon Chiefs, this is a no-brainer!

  7. Enough with Colin Kaepernick, the chiefs nor any other team is going to sign him. He’s done. Antonio Brown has a better chance playing this year than Kaepernick.

  8. I just showed up for the people who say they’ll stop watching football if Kaepernick is signed but will be on here tomorrow raging about the Patriots.

  9. Chiefs defense doesn’t play That donkey offense every week duplicating last night’s performance won’t happen again the rest of the season

  10. While this is one of the more plausible fits for a Kaepernick tryout, I think that would be more of an emergency move, not something to do if you’re only looking to bridge a week or two.

    I think a guy like Moore, who is football-ready, already familiar with the system, and a known quantity, gives them more chance to succeed for a short time than does devoting considerable resources to the work of getting someone like Kaep up to speed while also dealing with the full-time PR deluge that would accompany it. Though Mahomes is so secure in his position that they could handle the distraction if they wanted to.

    If Kaep wants a shot at things like this, he needs to accept backup money and a no-promises backup role to get onto a squad. That’s the path to opportunity at this position. The success of guys like Minshew, Allen, and Bridgewater this season is telling management they don’t need a hail-Mary overreach in order to win.

  11. Ummm what about Kaepernick?

    Oh yea,,thats rght. HAHAHAHA.
    Aint nobody ever signing him, so he wont be kneeling on a sideline anytime soon…….especially the CHIEFS sideline.

  12. Btw, even if Mahomes isn’t out long, he’s gonna be braced for weeks and his ankle’s already limiting his game. But given it’s now mid-Oct, stick with Moore & Shurm. Even if it’s torn ligaments and Mahomes spends much of 2020 getting it back, Moore isn’t a bad placeholder.

  13. Bring in a QB who wasn’t in camp and who doesnt know the playbook to take over in the middle of the season?

    Moore it is.

  14. Why does Kaepernick’s name come up in every QB conversation on this site? Correct me if i’m wrong but isn’t he the same guy that lost his starting job to Gabbert? Kaep can stick to philanthropy, let the athletes play football.

  15. Brett Favre! I mean you mentioned a QB who was supplanted by Blaine Gabbert 4 years ago, so everything should be on the table.

    How about Vick, better yet Jeff George….

  16. For the ones that don’t really know Matt Moore, he is anymore than capable backup and will win you plenty of games to stay at the top. Enough of the nonsense about CK

  17. McCoy and Keenum have 3m and 3.5m contracts that end this year. Both are cheap. One of the two will be gone next year. Washington should be calling KC before KC finds someone else. They can get a 4th or 5th rounder.

    Both are good enough to ‘manage’ KC. Both are football junkies and should be able to get a grasp of KC’s Offense to at least be a back-up, if not start down the line.

  18. Kaepernick?? The real question is when will the NFL owners stop colluding and give Jeff George an opportunity?

  19. Why not Kyle Lulleta from the Eagles practice squad He wont cost you a Draft pick and when Giants released him Doug Pederson picked him up immediately and he comes from the Andy Reid tree.

  20. Moore seemed to do a decent job last night. Maybe this is another “system QB” situation, or can we put that stupid argument to rest once and for all?

  21. at this point I want Kaepernick to get signed and play a lot. That way it will be settled that he is not viable player any longer thus we no longer have to read weekly blogs about how good is and when he fails miserably he’s torch his status as a martyr. Which is exactly why he won’t sign even if offered a job. He can’t afford to show the world he sucks.

  22. npobserver says:
    October 18, 2019 at 9:33 am
    at this point I want Kaepernick to get signed and play a lot. That way it will be settled that he is not viable player any longer thus we no longer have to read weekly blogs about how good is and when he fails miserably he’s torch his status as a martyr. Which is exactly why he won’t sign even if offered a job. He can’t afford to show the world he sucks

    ——

    I’m not going to speculate on how he would perform nor will I speculate on how his success, or lack of it, would affect his “status” as you perceive it, but I do think it would be interesting to find out.

  23. lol @ trading draft capital or anything else for an MVP (Cam) to play ball for 3-4 weeks.

    They have a backup. His name is Matt Moore, and he is being paid by the team to stay ready for exactly this type of situation. And guess what? The other 31 teams in the league have the same arrangement. We need to stop disrespecting these pros by suggesting that a guy who hasn’t played a down since Obama was in the white house could do a better job.

  24. ktoast says:
    October 18, 2019 at 10:38 am

    We need to stop disrespecting these pros by suggesting that a guy who hasn’t played a down since Obama was in the white house could do a better job.

    ———

    Who said that? Other than one comment that is clearly sarcasm, neither the article or nor any of the comments suggest Kaep would be a better option than Moore.

  25. What’s Farve up to these days? It’d be fun to see him suit up against the PAckers and Vikings with all those weapons on the Chiefs.

  26. Eli Manning is an even less athletic Joe Flacco…the worst decision on the planet would be to think they could wring out a few wins from curl into a ball Manning. Even Eli knows he stinks now and wouldn’t dare drop his no trade clause to get booed in KC.

  27. To all of the people bitching about the mere mention of Kap it’s because he’s objectively had more success than a lot of others under consideration.

    Let him try out. Let him compete. If he fails he fails. If he’s as bad as many here suggest I’m not sure why y’all are crying so much of him getting a call. If you are correct he’ll try, fall on his face and you’ll all be proven right.

    I don’t know if he has any good football left in him. What I do think is that if we are considering people who are unambiguous scrubs, he should also get a tryout.

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