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Stay In The Game: Patrick Mahomes Delivers A Super Bowl Victory Because He Didn’t Give In

Stay In The Game: Patrick Mahomes Delivers A Super Bowl Victory Because He Didn’t Give In

The past 48 hours have brought a lot of Patrick Mahomes news. As the second-year quarterback for the Kansas City Chiefs delivered that city’s first Super Bowl victory in 50 years a thrilling 31-20 win over the San Francisco 49ers, he’s been on quite a roll.

That’s a lot of dreams coming true over a couple of days in the life of a 24-year-old.

Not many people will have a run like that this year; heck, not many people will have a run like that in their lifetime. In fact, when you look at the first five weeks of Patrick Mahomes’ 2020, it’s been a run like almost no one has ever faced.

On January 12th, Mahomes led the Chiefs to a 51-31 victory against the Houston Texans. The Chiefs were down 24-0 at one point in the game.

On January 19th, Mahomes led the Chiefs to a 35-24 victory against the Tennessee Titans. The Chiefs were down 10-0 at one point in the game.

On February 2nd, Mahomes led the Chiefs to the Super Bowl title, again after being down in the game by 10 points.

Three straight double-digit playoff deficits. Three straight playoff victories. Toss in Mahomes’ 13 touchdowns (12 passing, 1 rushing) in three playoff games, and you have a pretty compelling picture of dominance.

Except, that’s not the whole picture. Because what Mahomes did in his final game reveals how he’s just starting to scratch the surface in his Greatness chase.

If you look at the box score from the first three quarters of the Super Bowl, you’ll wonder how the Chiefs could have possibly won the game. Mahomes was pedestrian for the majority of the Super Bowl, throwing two interceptions and tossing a number of errant passes to receivers. He was so out of sync, it seemed fairly obvious that San Francisco was going to run away with the game.

As I watched the game, I couldn’t help but wonder if the moment was too big for the young QB. It was his first Super Bowl, after all, and while the magic of the first two playoff wins was still fresh on everyone’s mind, pressure has a way of creeping up on all of us. Of course, the Great Ones thrive under pressure, so when Mahomes suddenly caught fire in the fourth quarter, leading three unanswered touchdown drives in the final eight minutes, I wondered no more.

After the game, Chiefs head coach Andy Reid told my friend Peter King, “I always think with him, keep firing. I’ve seen this before. Right when you don’t think he’s gonna do something, he rips your heart out with great plays. You saw that with Larry Bird. Larry Bird might’ve gone cold for a little bit, but he kept shooting.”

“That’s what you do with the great ones. This kid’s young, but he’s great. He’s gonna do nothing but get better.”

I love what Coach Reid says there—keep firing. Stay with the game and keep putting in the work because eventually, something is going to break your way. We’re just into February, and while your 2020 may not be off the best start, there’s still plenty of time to turn your year around.

But to do that, you’ve got to follow the example of Patrick Mahomes. You’ve got to:

  • Stay confident—keep a positive view of yourself and your circumstances.
  • Stay connected—keep a healthy relationship with each of your teammates.
  • Stay committed—keep doing your work with the belief that things will get better.

Will you necessarily win your version of the Super Bowl? Maybe not—but you’ll win each day and build momentum towards something greater. That’s what Mahomes did. It’s possible for you, too.

Kansas City will hold a parade to toast the team that ended their title drought, and they’ll celebrate the young quarterback who led them to that promised land. And Patrick Mahomes will likely enjoy every minute of the festivities and then get right back to work on next season.

Because, as all the Great Ones know, nothing—not good times, and certainly not bad times—last forever. But if you’ll prepare and stay in the game, you’ll be ready when your moment arrives.

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About Don Yaeger

Don Yaeger

Don Yaeger is a Certified Speaking Professional (CSP), longtime Associate Editor for Sports Illustrated, 11-time New York Times best-selling author, leadership expert and executive coach.

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