When you’re the best at it, people try to bring you down.
In a training camp press conference on Friday, Kansas City Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes shared his thoughts on recent criticism of his game — particularly from a racial angle.
Earlier this week, a quote from an unnamed NFL defensive coordinator went viral. In this quote, the anonymous coach criticized Mahomes for his “streetball” style of play.
“It’s kind of weird when guys like me, Kyler and Lamar get [criticism] when the other guys don’t,” he said. “But we’re going to go out there and prove ourselves every day.
That’s not a new observation from the former league MVP. Racial bias in football — especially at quarterback — has existed for decades.
What was once a predominantly white position now reflects the percentage of black players in the league. At the start of the 2020 season, a record 10 African-American quarterbacks were in QB1 positions – including Mahomes, Murray and Jackson.
Because these superstar three-quarterbacks don’t fit the old “prototypical QB” mold, they seem to be held to a higher standard by league critics. As the old saying goes, “Black Americans have to work twice as hard to get half as far.”
As unfair as this criticism may be, Mahomes and the rest of his fellow black quarterbacks will continue to prove they deserve their place at the table.