The “heat of the moment,” as described by Kansas City tackle Orlando Brown Jr., can turn into an explosive fire when Patrick Mahomes is your team’s quarterback.
That’s something Brown discovered first-hand from his spot along the Chiefs’ reconstructed offensive front as Kansas City (1-0) pulled off a fourth-quarter rally to win its opener. Now the team faces a Sunday night test at Baltimore against Brown’s former team, the Ravens (0-1).
“That’s what this team is, it’s a ton of resilience, a lot of talent, and Patrick is the best ever at what he does. This is a team you should never count out,” said Brown, who insisted he must play better while continuing to gel within a line that includes three rookie starters.
To improve immediately, he must dismiss any nostalgia he might feel while competing against his former team in a stadium where he also watched his father play.
“I’ll be very emotional, but I plan on letting my emotions play for themselves,” Brown said.
That and contining to trust in Mahomes, who fired three touchdown passes in the second half and finished with 337 yards while executing a 33-29 comeback against the Cleveland Browns. Mahomes took two sacks. His most dazzling throw, a 75-yard scoring bomb to Tyreek Hill, came while eluding pressure.
When asked how he clicked with his new line, Mahomes accepted blame on some of the pressures while acknowledging he could see a variety of blitzes from the Ravens, who feature rangy linebacker Patrick Queen.
“I’ve got to work on just the depth of my drop,” Mahomes said. “It’s something I always have to work on, just not fading back too much.”
Brown won’t be the only player who can share intel with a new team.
Sammy Watkins moved to Baltimore after contributing to the Chiefs’ Super Bowl runs the past two seasons. Watkins had four receptions for 96 yards in the Ravens’ opener, a 33-27 overtime loss Monday at Las Vegas.
“The best thing is we get to play against one of the best teams in the NFL,” Watkins said. “We’ve just got to come out and clean things up in practice. … We get to redeem ourselves.”
Any duel between Mahomes and Lamar Jackson creates considerable attention, but the Ravens’ quarterback knows he must exercise more caution after losing two fumbles in the opener. The second turnover led to the Raiders’ game-winning drive.
“That ticked me off. I hate any turnover,” said Jackson, who added that “we’ve got to move on quick. Everybody hates losing. It’s going to be a quick turnaround, though.”
Maybe that short timeframe will enable Jackson to not dwell on memories of three defeats in three meetings against Mahomes and the Chiefs. Jackson must continue to improvise with a patchwork offense that is coping with the loss of three running backs to injuries before the opener.
Against the Raiders, Ty’son Williams stepped up and ran for 65 yards and a touchdown on nine carries, while adding three receptions for 29 yards. Jackson, the first NFL quarterback to post 1,000 yards rushing in two seasons, gained 86 yards while averaging 7.2 yards per carry.
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