Q: On the discussion of going to the locker room to get x-rays.
MAHOMES: “Yeah, I obviously didn’t want to go back and see it. I didn’t want to go get the x-rays or whatever it was. I wanted just to continue to play. I told them I would do it at halftime but (Head) Coach (Andy Reid), in the best interest of me, just made – he made me go back there and get that x-ray before he put me back in the game and for a while I thought I could play through it and he said, “I’m not putting you back in so you might as well go get the x-ray and then if it’s negative or whatever I’ll put you back in.” So, I ran back there and got the x-ray and was able to finish the game.”
Q: How are you feeling now?
MAHOMES: “I was just talking to them. It feels better than I thought it would feel now. Obviously, I have a lot of adrenaline going right now we’ll see how it feels but I’ll hop right into treatment tonight and try to do whatever I can to be as close to 100% by next week but luckily for us we played the early game on Saturday so we get an extra almost half a day that I can let that ankle rest.”
Q: On Chad Henne’s performance and 98-yard drive.
MAHOMES: “I mean it’s special, man. He’s in the playoffs. He doesn’t get any reps during the week and he prepares himself to be able to go in for stuff like that and you have a 98-yard drive, backed up, playoff game against a great opponent and to be able to drive the ball down the field, make some big throws versus some pressure looks – I mean they brought some heat whenever he came into the game and he made some big throws and was able to get us into the endzone. And that was a big point in the game because that gave me the ability to kind of come back and rest and wait till half time until we could kind of re-tape and did everything we could to get me ready to go in the second half.”
Q: What other treatment did you get?
MAHOMES: “No, no real treatment. You don’t have time to get treatment and stuff like that. You just put the spat on, get it tight, try to keep the swelling down and then go out there and play. They made me do a couple of things in the locker room to show that I could move and protect myself if everything kind of came, pressure came, whatever it was and credit to the team. (The) offensive line did an amazing job of protecting me, I got the ball out of my hands quickly and guys made plays. But it’s a team sport for a reason and guys stepped up around me.”
Q: How do you have to adjust your footwork with the injury. Was it conscious? How did that impact you?
MAHOMES: “Yeah you just got to be a competitor at the end of the day. Not all things are going to be perfect. You have to find a way to makes stuff happen. Obviously, I missed some throws that probably think I could have made if I would’ve been in the right foot position but luckily for me I’m not in the right foot position all the time so I’m able to make some throws like that anyways.”
Q: Did you have a point where you thought you’d hinder the team by being out there?
MAHOMES: “I mean I’m not coming out of a playoff game unless they take me out. I’m just going to play. I love this sport too much; I love this game. I love playing with my teammates and being able to go out there and enjoy it together. We prepare all year to be in the playoffs and to play in these games and I’m glad that I was able to get back in the game and it’s something that I just love competing in this sport and pain is pain and you’re going to have to deal with it either way.”
Q: This is your fifth straight AFC Championship. What does that mean to you?
MAHOMES: “Yeah, it’s a credit to the team I have around me, the coaches I have around me and the organization in general. We prepare ourselves every year from training camp in St. Joseph, Missouri to be here but it takes a day by day process and I think the coaches preach that, the players do that and the organization around us supports us in that mission and so we just try to do whatever we can to be in this position to get to this AFC Championship, and then now find a way to get to the Super Bowl and that’s going to take a great week of preparation and practice.”
Q: How much do you feel the injury impacted your game in the second half?
MAHOMES: “There were a couple throws here and there where I tried to plant off that foot and it didn’t let me plant like I usually do and so a couple throws I didn’t make. I told (Head) Coach (Andy Reid) I want to still throw it down field and so we were able to make some throws there after the first few drives. I think he got a little confidence that I can protect myself. So credit to our defense holding us in that game, especially after the start of that second half when I wasn’t able to get stuff going. They held us in the game, made some big plays at the end and we were able to score enough points to win.”
Q: Were those moments waiting for the results of your x-rays nervous? Can you talk about those moments?
MAHOMES: “Yeah, I mean pretty nervous moments, man. I just, I always pray whenever stuff like that comes around. It’s all in God’s hands at the end of the day and I just have to accept whatever it is and turn it into a positive. Luckily for me, He blessed me to keep me injury free as far as breaks or anything like that. So now, how can I prepare my body to be ready to go next week? I’ll start that tonight and that process will be tough, but I’ll be ready to go.”
Q: Wil you watch the Bills vs Bengals game tomorrow?
MAHOMES: “Yeah, well I’ll be watching the game, for sure. Playoff football is the best time of the year, man, just to be able to watch that. So I’ll get the treatment and stuff like that but the family’s going to have to wait for a while because I’ll be getting that stuff done.”
Q: Did they have the game on while you were getting your x-rays?
MAHOMES: “Oh no. They don’t ever show the tv. I’ve been back there, the Divisional round whenever, the Browns game, when Chad (Henne) was playing, I didn’t get to see like any of that until the last drive. So they do a good job of not having the tv’s going in there so I have to focus on myself and getting myself better more than focusing on the game.”
Q: Travis Kelce had 14 receptions, 98 yards and two touchdowns. Can you talk about his performance?
MAHOMES: “Yeah man, another guy just steps up. It seems like he (Travis Kelce) gets better and better in the playoffs as you get further and further in there and you need those types of guys. He did a great job of making some tough, contested catches and he’s special man. He’s a special player, one-of-a-kind player who’s one of the main reasons that we’ve been able to be in this position so many times.”
Q: When the Jaguars cut the lead to three, can you take me through that next drive that ended with the touchdown by Marquez Valdes-Scantling?
MAHOMES: “Yeah it was a good drive by everybody. I think everybody had a part in that drive. Everybody was making plays and that’s what championship teams do. Whenever stuff’s not going their way and the game gets tight, how are you going to respond? I went down, I kind of jumped and landed on the same ankle but I had to find a way to get the ball in the endzone and Marquez (Valdes-Scantling) was there, and I needed to make the throw and he stepped up and made a big play there at the end of the game to win it.”
Q: Lots of people thought it would be an easy game for the Chiefs. What was it like to be in a tight game when some thought it would not be tight and your season was on the line?
MAHOMES: “Yeah, first, I never think any playoff game is going to be easy. Teams are here for a reason and even if they are surprised in a sense or whatever it is, they’re here for a reason. They have the confidence that it’s going to be a great game. If you look at Wild Card weekend or really the playoffs in general these last few years, every game seems like it’s a one score game so we came with the mentality that were going to have to play till the very end and obviously we had some adversity there with some injuries and stuff like that but I was proud of how the guys responded and figured out how to get the win.”
Q: How much of your urgency to come back was you wanting to signal to your teammates that you were ok? How much was wanting to play?
MAHOMES: “Yeah, I mean obviously you want to play. You just want to play because you’ve built that time from St. Joseph (in training camp), you’ve spent this time with your teammates, and built up for this moment so you don’t want to let guys down or whatever it is. You want to be in the game and be able to go out there and show off what you’ve worked for, but I don’t think it really was anything for the team because the team has so much belief in Chad (Henne). He’s done it before, he’s won Divisional games by coming in and playing so they have so much belief in Chad. And you saw him (have) a 98-yard drive. He ran the offense the way the offense is supposed to be ran, he threw it to the right guys and guys stepped up and made plays. That’s what a great team does, it’s not about one guy it’s about the whole team.”