GWINN: Pat Mahomes Has Become a Spoiled, Entitled Brat

Tom Pennington_Getty Images
Tom Pennington/Getty Images

It gives me no pleasure to write what I’m about to write as I’ve counted myself among his biggest fans since he stepped onto the NFL scene, but it needs to be said: Pat Mahomes is not who we thought he was. He has become an entitled brat, and it genuinely hurts to see it happen.

When Mahomes slammed his helmet to the ground in a childish and completely unjustified rant at the officials Sunday afternoon (a rant that would have been childish even if the offsides call had been wrong, which it wasn’t), he unmasked and showed us a side of himself we had not previously seen.

Oh, calm down. Please don’t make a big deal out of it. He didn’t really know it was a legitimate penalty. He was just lost in the moment. 

Really? Let’s throw the challenge flag and let replay be the judge.

Mahomes was incensed because officials called offsides on Chiefs WR Kadarius Toney on a play where Travis Kelce threw a lateral pass to Toney, who then scored what would have likely been the game-winning touchdown.

A thoroughly enraged Pat Mahomes lost his mind with the officials in a display so over-the-top that his teammates had to restrain him.

What’s the problem with this reaction? Other than this role model and team leader behaving like a drunk who just got tossed out of a bar before closing time? He’s completely wrong. The call was correct, and the video shows it was correct.

No problem, though, right? Certainly, the integrity-filled Mahomes will calm down, realize the error of his ways, apologize for the outburst, and admit the call was right by the time he got to the microphone at his post-game press conference, right? Right?! Wrong.

Instead, Mahomes made no apology for his behavior and doubled down on his rant.

It’s tough to swallow,” Mahomes said via ESPN’s Jeff Darlington. “Not only from me, and football in general, to take away greatness like that, for a guy like Travis [Kelce] to make a play like that, you want to see the guys on the field decide the game. They’re human. They make mistakes. But every week, we’re talking about something. . . . It’s the call. Just in that moment. Not for myself. To have a flag change the outcome of the game. I’ve never had offensive offsides called. If it does, they warn you. There wasn’t a warning the entire game. And then you make a call like that in the final minute? Another game, we’re talking about the refs. It’s not what we want for the NFL. It’s not what we want for football.”

It’s worth pausing to note that Mahomes is not actually saying the call was wrong. Instead, he seems to be saying that the referee should not have thrown the flag because it robbed Travis Kelce of his “greatness.” I doubt the good people of Buffalo, New York, would agree that not following the rules of the game to allow Travis Kelce to achieve “greatness” in front of Taylor Swift would have been the way to go.

I wonder what Mahomes would have thought if the officials had kept the flag in their pocket to allow the Eagles’ greatness to proceed during last year’s Super Bowl?

That holding call on James Bradberry set up the Chiefs to kick what ultimately became the game-winning field goal with 8 seconds left. Was it a legit holding call? I think so. However, it was very borderline. Kadarius Toney certainly wasn’t any less offside than Bradberry was holding. And if Mahomes believes the officials should keep the flags in their pockets to allow players to achieve moments of greatness on Sundays in December, then surely, he must believe the officials should have kept the flags in their pockets during the waning moments of a climactic Super Bowl battle last February, right?

Probably not.

Mahomes’ classless display wasn’t limited to the sidelines or the podium. Incredibly, he even whined about the offside call on Toney while congratulating Bills QB Josh Allen.

“Wildest f-i*ckg call I’ve ever seen,” Mahomes said. “Offensive offsides on that play, man. F*cking terrible.”

Seriously, who does that? What a fake thing to do to congratulate someone for a win while reminding them that you believe their victory was a total fraud.

NFL officiating is a mess right now. Of this, there is no doubt. But it doesn’t get to be a mess for everyone else and a magical wonderland for Mahomes. He can reap the benefits of bad calls and suffer the consequences of bad calls just like everyone else.

Pat Mahomes is not above the game, no matter how much he thinks he is.


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