Patrick Mahomes has ushered in the newest dynasty in the NFL, leading the Kansas City Chiefs to three Super Bowl titles in a five-season span. Mahomes has won three Super Bowl MVPs, trailing only Tom Brady for the most Super Bowl MVPs in NFL history.
At this point, the only quarterback Mahomes has to catch in the greatest quarterback conversation is Brady. This demonstrates how incredible of a start Mahomes has had in his Hall of Fame career (yes, Mahomes is a Hall of Fame-bound quarterback at age 28).
Going down the list of postseason accomplishments, Mahomes is already among the all-time greats at quarterback. His 15 postseason victories trail only Brady (31) and Joe Montana (16), largely considered the two greatest quarterbacks in NFL history. Brady and Montana are also the other two quarterbacks with three Super Bowl MVPs (Brady has five and Montana has three).
Mahomes is the first player to win two NFL MVP awards and three Super Bowl MVPs before the age of 30. He’s just the second player amongst the “big four” American sports leagues (MLB, NFL, NBA, NHL) to have three championship MVP awards before turning 29 (Magic Johnson is the other) and the first player in NFL history to have three Super Bowl MVPs in a five-season span.
Since Mahomes has his third championship, only Brady (7), Montana (4), and Terry Bradshaw (4) are the quarterbacks with more NFL titles. Of course, all those quarterbacks, including Mahomes, have won back-to-back titles.
Mahomes is already fifth in playoff touchdowns (41) and eighth in passing yards (5,135), while also having the highest passer rating in NFL playoff history. Based on the start Mahomes has already had to his incredible career, it’s fair to rank him as a top-three quarterback in NFL history.
Mahomes deserves to be in the same breath as Brady and Montana. Has he surpassed them already? Not quite. Here’s our ranking of the top three.
3. Patrick Mahomes
Mahomas is off to the greatest start for a quarterback ever. He already has three Super Bowls at the age of 28 and three Super Bowl MVPs. He’s on that exclusive list of winning two NFL MVPs and three Super Bowl MVPs (Brady, Montana are the others) — yet Mahomes isn’t even 30 yet (Brady reached this feat at 33 and Montana at 34).
Only Bart Starr (.900) has a better playoff win percentage than Mahomes (.833), as Starr was 9-1 in 10 playoff starts while Mahomes is 15-3 in 18 playoff starts. Mahomes also has the best best road and Super Bowl win percentage of any quarterback in NFL playoff history with an .833 win rate (5-1, minimum five starts).
The comebacks are also a part of the story. Mahomes is 3-1 when trailing by 10+ points in a Super Bowl. Every other quarterback is 4-48. He’s the only quarterback in NFL history to be over .500 when trailing by double digits at any point (17-14, minimum 10 starts). All other quarterbacks are 224-1,202-5 (.158 win percentage) in games their team trails by double digits.
The regular season stats will get there, but winning three championships and having two NFL MVPs at the age of 28 has merit. In six seasons, Mahomes has two MVPs, three Super Bowl MVPs, one Offensive Player of the Year, led the league in touchdown passes twice, and passing yards per game twice.
There’s plenty of time to add to these accomplishments.
2. Joe Montana
Just like Mahomes, Montana has two NFL MVPs and three Super Bowl MVPs. Montana led the 49ers to four Super Bowls and won all four of them, orchestrating a game-winning drive himself in Super Bowl XXIII (culminating with a game-winning touchdown pass to John Taylor with 34 seconds left).
Montana originally set the standard for performance in Super Bowls. His 11 touchdown passes in Super Bowls trail only Brady for the most in NFL history, and his 68% completion rate is the second-highest for any quarterback that’s started in multiple Super Bowls. Montana has completed 68% of his passes for 1,148 yards with 11 touchdowns to zero interceptions in his four Super Bowl appearances, an astonishing 127.8 passer rating.
Basically, Montana and Mahomes have the same career in terms of regular season and playoff awards (both have an Offensive Player of the Year award as well) — and Mahomes is just one behind Montana in Super Bowl titles. Mahomes is on the path to passing Montana in career touchdown passes (Montana has 273, Mahomes has 219) and passing yards (Montana has 40,551; Mahomes has 28,424).
Crazy to think Montana has just one more playoff win than Mahomes at this stage in the game. But we can’t put Mahomes ahead just yet.
1. Tom Brady
Brady is still the standard for quarterback play — and will be for a long time. Brady won seven Super Bowl titles in his career, the most by any player in NFL history and more Super Bowl titles than any franchise.
In addition to Brady’s seven Super Bowl titles, his five Super Bowl MVPs are the most in NFL history. Brady has the most passing yards (89,214) and passing touchdowns (649) in league history, along with the most quarterback wins and Pro Bowl selections in league history. Brady is the only player to win a NFL title in three different decades and is the only starting quarterback to win a Super Bowl with two different teams (Peyton Manning is the other).
Brady has the most passing yards (3,039) and passing touchdowns (21) in Super Bowl history. Remember, Brady has the most championships as a player in NFL history (seven).
Seven championships, five Super Bowl MVPs, three NFL MVPs, two Offensive Player of the Year awards are just the beginning of Brady’s accolades. He also has the most postseason wins (35), playoff passing yards (13,400), and playoff passing touchdowns (88) in NFL history). Brady also led the NFL in passing touchdowns five times and passing yards per game three times.
This is the bar Mahomes has to clear to be considered the greatest.