UPDATE: The official numbers on the extension are 10-years, $450M with $140M guaranteed, according to Adam Schefter. See the original post/reaction below
The NFL and its fans received a massive bombshell on Monday when NFL insider Adam Schefter broke the news that the Kansas City Chiefs and superstar quarterback Patrick Mahomes had agreed to a 10-year extension that will keep the Super Bowl MVP in KC through the 2031 season. Schefter later reported that Mahomes’ will be receiving somewhere north of $400 million through the duration of this contract. In all, it will be a 12-year deal as Mahomes had two years, $27.6M left on his current deal. This contract will be the largest in North American sports history.
And it isn’t hard to see why the Chiefs would either have to or be willing to fork over hundreds of millions of dollars to retain the services of one of the brightest stars in the entire league. Mahomes, while coming off just his second full season, has already made an impact. In 2018, Mahomes took over the Kansas City offense and lead the team to a 12-4 record while throwing 5097 yards and 50 touchdowns to just 12 interceptions. Mahomes brought the Chiefs to the brink of the Super Bowl, but the team ultimately lost to the New England Patriots in overtime in the AFC Championship Game.
Mahomes didn’t have as dominating a season in 2019, but he once again helped lead the Chiefs to a 12-4 record while missing two games due to a knee injury. Mahomes threw for 4031 yards while throwing 26 touchdowns and 5 interceptions. The Chiefs made the Super Bowl for the first time since Super Bowl IV and defeated the San Francisco 49ers to end a 50 year Super Bowl drought. Mahomes was named the Super Bowl MVP after throwing 286 yards, two touchdowns, and two picks.
Mahomes, who is still only 24, will now be under contract with the Chiefs until his age 36 season. The Chiefs likely locked him in for the rest of his career, and the team has every reason to be happy about that. Mahomes and this offense are akin to two peas in a pod. They compliment each other and highlight their strengths. Andy Reid and the Kansas City front office are going to love watching Mahomes on their side for the next decade.
However, the team probably isn’t thrilled with the price tag. As Schefter also reported, Mahomes’ money will be tied to a percentage of the salary cap. The Chiefs were adamant about not doing this in the weeks and days leading up to it.
It should go without saying that the Chiefs are entering cap hell with this deal. Tyreek Hill is due for a new contract after the 2022 season, and while the exact amount of cap we can project KC to have isn’t known, it goes without saying that a deal with Hill will be a bit difficult. Tyrann Mathieu’s deal is up after the 2021 season, and Chris Jones is up for a new deal after the 2020 season. The adage goes that money doesn’t grow on trees, and unless that changes, Jones is likely gone. And the team will have to get extremely creative to work out big extensions for their major players as time goes on.
Now, that is not to say that keeping Mahomes is a bad idea. This contract could easily be justified if Mahomes continues to develop and continues to be one of the top quarterbacks in the entire league. If Kansas City wins multiple championships then they will be fine with this contract, and the cap hell can be justified as a means to an end of creating a perennial contender. However, this is something to keep in mind as the ink dries and the Chiefs roll on with their franchise QB. This deal is a huge risk, even on a superstar like Mahomes, and only time will tell if the risk was worth the potential reward.
Photo Credit: Reuters