Is Patrick Mahomes Playing Today vs. Bengals?

Is Patrick Mahomes Playing Today vs. Bengals?

With Kansas City Chiefs star QB Patrick Mahomes suffering an ankle injury in the Divisional Round of the 2022-23 NFL playoffs, all eyes were on him this week. As the Chiefs QB deals with a reported high-ankle sprain, will we see him on the field against the Cincinnati Bengals?

Is Patrick Mahomes Playing Today?

Entering Sunday, all indications are that Mahomes will be playing for the Chiefs in the AFC Championship Game. Despite a high-ankle sprain diagnosis, Mahomes was listed as a full participant all week in practice. With all that said, it was both a surprise and not that he was completely cleared from the final injury report on Friday and carries no designation into the weekend.

During last week’s contest against the Buffalo Bills, we saw Mahomes leave the game early in the second quarter. He was taken to the locker room, leaving veteran backup Chad Henne to lead a touchdown drive. However, after halftime, it was Mahomes who returned to the field. While he did not look to be at full fitness, it was promising to see his mobility significantly improve compared to when he first suffered the injury in the first half.

One additional note of comfort for the Chiefs was how Henne handled being thrust into the game. Starting a drive on his own 2-yard line, the 37-year-old QB led the team down the field for a touchdown to extend the Chiefs’ lead to 17-7.

MORE: Bengals vs. Chiefs Injury Report

The Chiefs didn’t ask Henne to do much, as he went 5-for-7 for just 23 yards and a touchdown. However, the value of having a reliable backup was demonstrated at that moment.

It will be intriguing to see what Mahomes looks like on the field this week and how the Bengals defend him. The star gunslinger led the league in passing yards (5,250) and touchdowns (41) with an impressive 6.3% touchdown rate. But one of Mahomes’ most significant skills is his ability to use his legs to extend plays and open up opportunities down the field.

If his ankle is bothering him or the injury gets aggravated, we could see the offense rely more on playing in structure. The Chiefs’ offense is more than capable of doing it, but those ad hoc plays can be so dangerous, and it would be a big loss if K.C. can’t rely on them.