Chiefs Backup Chad Henne Preparing For AFC Championship Game as a ‘Starter’

Published 01/21/2021, 7:49 AM EST
Jan 17, 2021; Kansas City, Missouri, USA; Kansas City Chiefs quarterback Chad Henne (4) celebrates the victory against the Cleveland Browns in the AFC Divisional Round playoff game at Arrowhead Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Jay Biggerstaff-USA TODAY Sports


There was pin-drop silence at the Arrowhead Stadium on Sunday as defending champions, Kansas City Chiefs, saw their starting quarterback Patrick Mahomes left the field with a concussion.

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The reigning Super Bowl LIV MVP hit the ground hard after a tackle from Browns linebacker Mack Wilson. Almost immediately, backup QB Chad Henne came onto the field in Mahomes’ absence.

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

He stayed on after it was confirmed that Mahomes was ruled out for the rest of the game. Despite a slight scare, Henne did enough to lead the Chiefs to a 22-17 win in front of home fans.

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In doing so, he ensured that the Chiefs will play their 3rd-straight AFC Championship game this weekend. With Mahomes still reeling from last week’s hit, Henne could still have a small or big role to play against the Josh Allen-led Buffalo Bills.

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Divisional Round hero Chad Henne prepared to step in for Mahomes if needed

Ahead of Sunday’s AFC Championship game, backup QB Chad Henne remains confident in his own abilities. The veteran NFL shot-caller is prepared to step in if called upon against the AFC East champions.

“It’s going to stay the same. Prepare, like you’re the starter each and every week, no matter what happens, and I have to be prepared.

“Even if something were to happen, and, you know, whatever does happen, happens. And for me, I just take it each day at a time. And, you know, always stay ready. You never know who’s going to be in and we’ll be excited,“ he told reporters.

Jan 17, 2021; Kansas City, Missouri, USA; Kansas City Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes (15) throws against the Cleveland Browns during the first half in the AFC Divisional Round playoff game at Arrowhead Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Jay Biggerstaff-USA TODAY Sports

With respect to tackling the strong Bills defense, Henne said, “I think we feel very confident on our protection calls. I think, you know, Patrick’s progressed, since day one.

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“He’s a smart player who understands what the defense is doing… I think we feel confident our protection calls.”

Mahomes was a ‘limited participant’ during yesterday’s Chiefs practice session at the Arrowhead. Coach Reid remains optimistic that his star quarterback will pass the 5-step concussion protocol and be eligible for Sunday’s AFC Championship game.

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Daniel Arambur

1652 articles

Daniel Arambur is an NFL writer and content strategist for EssentiallySports.With more than 1,000 articles, he is one of the senior writers in the NFL cohort at ES. A mass media graduate from the University of Mumbai, Daniel has found the perfect blend of vocation and passion in the sports content niche.

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