Can a Concussed Patrick Mahomes Return in Time for the Chiefs’ AFC Title Game?

Published 01/17/2021, 6:31 PM EST
Jan 17, 2021; Kansas City, Missouri, USA; Kansas City Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes (15) is brought down by Cleveland Browns outside linebacker Mack Wilson (51) during the second half in the AFC Divisional Round playoff game at Arrowhead Stadium. Mahomes would suffer an injury on the play. Mandatory Credit: Jay Biggerstaff-USA TODAY Sports


With the Kansas City Chiefs now through to the AFC Championship game, the question on everyone’s mind is whether Patrick Mahomes will be fit for next week. 

ADVERTISEMENT

Article continues below this ad

The star quarterback took a hit in the 3rd quarter of the Divisional game against the Cleveland Browns and went off the pitch to be evaluated for a concussion.

He stayed out for the rest of the game as he failed to clear a concussion protocol conducted by medical professionals on the pitch.  

ADVERTISEMENT

Article continues below this ad

The NFL has a strict policy when it comes to evaluating players with concussions. The current rules require an extensive list of check-ups before a player is cleared to take the field again. 

What is the current concussion protocol in the NFL?

The league has dedicated spotters to keep an eye out for moments where players pick up suspected concussions. 

The player is then escorted to the locker room to get checked by an independent neurotrauma evaluator who is assigned to each franchise by the NFL. The evaluator conducts a series of examinations which include cognitive and balance tests. 

If a player clears the evaluation, then he is allowed to return to the field. But if the player fails the evaluation, then it’s a much more rigorous process to be cleared from thereon. 

DIVE DEEPER

Former NFL Coach Claims Josh Allen-led Buffalo Bills Can Challenge Any Team in the League

4 months ago

The player begins recovery by resting. The athlete can only take part in light stretching activities. Once the player shows further signs of recovery, under the direct supervision of the team’s medical staff, the player can progress to graduated cardio activities and balance training. 

From there, the player can progress to contactless training. Once the team’s medical staff clears the player to return to practice, the independent neurotrauma expert will also perform an evaluation.

If the independent evaluator concurs with the findings of the team’s medical staff, the player is then cleared to return to full practice and games.

Patrick Mahomes, an uncertainty for Conference Championship tie 

ADVERTISEMENT

Article continues below this ad

The NFL is a hard-hitting league, which makes concussions a common occurrence as well. How fast a player recovers from a concussion is not something one can put a date on. Some return within a week, while others can take much more.

Jan 17, 2021; Kansas City, Missouri, USA; Kansas City Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes (15) throws against the Cleveland Browns at Arrowhead Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Jay Biggerstaff-USA TODAY Sports

The Chiefs take on the rampaging Buffalo Bills in the AFC Championship tie. And if Mahomes fails to recover in time for the crunch tie, their ambitions of defending their Super Bowl title will take quite a hit. 

ADVERTISEMENT

Article continues below this ad

DIVE DEEPER

Cleveland Browns Register Record-Setting Drive in Divisional Round Playoff Against Chiefs

4 months ago

SHARE THIS ARTICLE :

Shivayan Roy

590 articles

Shivayan Roy is currently an NFL writer at EssentiallySports. After completing his Masters Diploma in Journalism from the Asian College of Journalism, Roy functioned as a reporter for Goal.com and extensively covered the FIFA U-17 World Cup.

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT