The Chiefs’ Patrick Mahomes completed a morning walkaround on Wednesday and intends to train as usual, raising expectations that the All-Pro quarterback won’t be slowed down by his sprained ankle in this weekend’s AFC title game against the Cincinnati Bengals.
In fact, Mahomes sounded upbeat on Wednesday when asked about the Bengals’ game.
“AFC Championship Week,” he said. “Ready to go.”
Mahomes was injured late in the first quarter of their division win over Jacksonville last Saturday when Jaguar’s pass rusher Arden Key landed on him. X-rays taken during the game were negative, and Mahomes returned in the second half to lead his team to a 27-20 win and a berth in the Chiefs’ fifth straight conference title game.
“It’s going well,” Mahomes said. “I did a few days of treatment, a few days of rehab. Excited to get down to the practice field and try it out and see where I stand. But so far it feels good.
“I felt better than I thought after the game. Moving on it during gameplay definitely hurt. But after the game I could rest it and kind of ice it and do various things like that. I felt in a slightly better position and obviously I felt a little bit better the next morning and then I got better and better throughout the week so we’ll see how I feel in training today.”
Mahomes also said he was careful not to aggravate the injury.
“I have to find ways to push off and still get the shots right,” he said. “I’m going to push it a little bit today and then the next day and then again the next day and see what I can do then. Not making the injury worse of course but pushing it to see what I can do on Sunday.
Mahomes said the injury was similar to one he endured earlier in the 2019 season when he came back the following week to throw four touchdown passes in a win over the Raiders. The only difference is that it’s his right ankle, not his left.
It’s also not as bad as a toe injury Mahomes suffered earlier in his career.
“He had a couple of injuries in college that he struggled through,” said Chiefs coach Andy Reid. “In the NFL, in all the games you play, you very rarely get to this point without having something. That’s how it goes.”
Reid said he doesn’t expect to hold Mahomes back in training this week.
“Most likely he won’t do just a little bit. I don’t think I need to go there with that,” Reid said. “Maybe I need to pull him back a bit. But knowing him, I think he’ll try to do everything and we’ll see what he does.