NFL Takes, TooAthletic Takes

I find myself writing frequently about two individuals from two separate sports. Why? Well, they are among the top players in their sports to lead with; each winning at least an MVP award in during their their careers.  With that fact we can safely assume that they performed on a level that brought their team success in more ways than one. The most important common denominator shared by both individuals are the fact that they both were able, are able, or have already started to revolutionize their respective sport in their own way.  These two are the National Basketball Association’s Stephen Curry of the Golden State Warriors and the National Football League’s Patrick Mahomes of the Kansas City Chiefs.

Curry didn’t necessarily storm the league early on as Mahomes is doing with record breaking starts but he developed into what we recognize as the greatest shooter of all time and he is still currently playing with his prime still intact with his game.  For the last half a decade or so, Curry has done something we have not seen since #MichaelJordan was playing in the #NBA; he revolutionized the way the game was played within the confines of the league that eventually stretched out to influence the entire basketball world.  How did he do so?  He transformed himself into a point guard that was a sniper, an assassin from behind the three-point line and beyond. 

Here is the thing about Curry, he literally eliminated the coach’s want for a big man based off of how he can stretch the floor like no one ever has and probably never will again.  Unlike any one else in the sport, as soon as Curry steps past the half court mark, consider his ability to drain a shot just as high of percentage if he were in standing on the three point line.  Prior to Curry doing this, it was considered unreal or far from basketball logic.  He could and still can score off the screen, pick and roll, spotting up, driving and after he creates space to get a shot off.  It’s like watching someone dance playfully with a basketball, chucking up a prayer and it going in half the time.  His ability to make it seem effortless is just uncanny at the minimum.

How does Mahomes compare?  Well, stat wise…he has played 3 games thus far this season and threw 10 touchdown passes with over 1000 passing yards.  In his first 20 games of his career Mahomes has thrown 6576 yards passing while averaging 328.8 yards per game.  He has thrown for 300 yards 13 out of the 20 games he has played.  He broke Kurt Warner’s record by the time he got to 18 games and leave players like Andrew Luck, Marc Bulger and Jameis Winston in the dust in seeing that they accumulated under 5300 passing yards in their first 20 games.  Still not enough? Okay, dig this, he beat Dan Marino’s record in five games less. Yea, you heard me absolutely correctly.  Dan Marino actually sat at 47 touchdowns across his first 20 games tied with #KurtWarner.  The both were out performed by Patrick Mahomes who sits at a healthy 60 touchdowns thus far.  If that doesn’t open your eyes, it sure as hell opened mine. 

So how is he revolutionizing the game?  Let us look at a couple of stats prior to me elaborating so we can come to a mutual understanding prior getting lost in this debate that shouldn’t even be a debate.  This guy has a quarterback rating of 115.3 for his career and completes 67% of his passes while averaging 9 yards a play. As a matter of fact, #ColinCowherd stated brought up some interesting facts for us on Mahomes this season.  In the last two 2nd quarters he has played he has led his team to gain 51 points, completed 77 percent of his passes, thrown 6 touchdowns with zero interceptions and is seven tenths away from a perfect quarterback rating sitting at 157.6.  That was a tad bit more than a couple but it was warranted to get you to understand this: Mahomes is off to be the best passer this league has ever seen. He literally increases the red zone for the Kansas City Chiefs immediately as he makes a presence on the field. After that fifty yard mark, just like Curry crossing the half court mark, a score is nearly and seemingly inevitably near. This kid has coaches “pulling out their hair” because they cannot stop him.  When the opposition can figure out Andy Reid’s game plan it doesn’t matter because they cannot stop the former MVP.

When Curry and the Warriors went to back to back to back #NBAFinals, the league started shifting into how they structured their teams because of his ability to stretch the floor.  Look at the Clippers, the Lakers and the Sixers.  They stacked up to take out the best of the best led by one of the best in Curry.  Then other teams attempted to mirror the Warriors diagram and system such as the Bucks, the Rockets and the Celtics but they don’t have the player that made it all possible; Steph Curry.  The NFL is seeing the same change because of one kid, Patrick Mahomes.  The Browns tried and we see how that worked out.  The Patriots took a risk to grab Antonio Brown which for once, backfired on them.  Teams see how unstoppable this aerial attack Mahomes produces as an onslaught every week and want to be what they cannot stop.

Players that seem close to their level of play are no where near it and I figured it out the hard way by choosing Lamar Jackson over Mahomes.  That was the equivalent to choosing Damian Lillard over Steph Curry.  Neither are bad players at all, they are actually great but they are no where near the level of greatness that these two players currently reside at.  Ironically, though the NBA season has not started, Curry will be forced to prove to the world again just how good he is in the same way Mahomes is now. Mahomes is without Tyreek Hill, without an injury-free offensive line and without the Chiefs first two options at running back and is on track to having a better campaign than last year during his MVP season. 

Curry will be challenged with the temporary absence of Klay Thompson due to injury and the permanent absences of both Andre Iguodala, a Finals MVP and Kevin Durant, one of the greatest scorers ever. He doesn’t have anything left to prove after obtaining three rings unlike Mahomes who has none, but I am positive this season will put both players at an even higher tier, possibly creating their own.  Oh and to the Cowboys Hall of Fame quarterback Troy Aikman…you are absolutely and undoubtedly correct, they should never have compared the likes of you to him…he is a far better quarterback than what you were. He doesn’t need to obtain a Super Bowl to prove that. 

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