KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) — Kansas City Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes was knocked out the divisional-playoff game against the Cleveland Browns on Sunday with a concussion in the third quarter.
Mahomes tucked the ball on a quarterback option with 7:27 left in the third quarter and tried to reach the first-down marker on third-and-1 near midfield. He was brought down hard by Browns linebacker Mack Wilson, who had managed to get ahold of him around his helmet. Mahomes was wobbly when he got up and had to be helped from the field, then was checked briefly in the blue tent on the sideline before jogging into the Kansas City locker room.
Chad Henne entered the game for Mahomes, who had been hobbling for much of the game after hurting his foot in the first quarter. Henne played the entirety of Kansas City’s loss to the Chargers in Week 17, when coach Andy Reid sat Mahomes and several other starts with the No. 1 seed and first-round playoff bye already secured.
Henne led the Chiefs to a field goal that made it 22-10 with 4:24 left in the third quarter. Henne went down the tunnel to check on Mahomes when the third quarter ended.
The Chiefs announced early in the fourth quarter that Mahomes will not return, but post-game head coach Andy Reid showed optimism towards his status in the AFC Championship game.
Meanwhile, the Browns lost left tackle Jedrick Wills Jr. to an ankle injury and his backup, Kendall Lamm, to an elbow injury, forcing them to turn to Blake Hance. Hance was signed from the Jets practice squad on Jan. 2 to provide some depth to an offensive line that has been decimated by injuries and COVID-19 since the start of the new year.
Hance made his NFL debut in the fourth quarter of their wild-card win over Pittsburgh.
Wills remained down after Nick Chubb’s carry on the Browns’ first offensive play of the game before limping to the sideline with help from the training staff. He was listed as questionable to return before being ruled out at halftime.
Lamm was replaced at the start of the second half, helping the Browns drive 77 yards for a touchdown.
The injuries to the two left tackles made it even more important that Jack Conklin was active. The All-Pro right tackle had been questionable after hurting his hamstring in last week’s wild-card win in Pittsburgh.
The depth of the Browns offensive line has been decimated this season. Backups Chris Hubbard, Nick Harris and Michael Dunn are all out with season-ending injuries.
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