Thumbs Up/Thumbs Down- The Nine Before Mahomes

Eric Urbanowicz
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Since making his debut on December 27, 2017, Kansas City Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes has done nothing but light up the league.

From his Most Valuable Player run in the 2018-19 season to his Super Bowl championship run the next year, Mahomes has been remarkable. What surprises most people is the fact that he was taken 10th overall in his draft.

Though it’s only been three years since that draft, it has some people wondering who was drafted before him? Well let’s take a look at the nine players drafted ahead of Mahomes and the team that traded the pick that ultimately was used on him. Were these players worth missing out on the early success of a future MVP and Super Bowl champion?


No. 1 overall: Cleveland Browns, Defensive End Myles Garrett

Since coming into the league, Garrett has become a major impact of the Cleveland Browns defense. Averaging about 10 sacks a year, the one thing that’s hampered Garrett has been time missed. In his three seasons, Garrett’s missed 11 games due to injury or in the case of this past season, a suspension. Still though, he’s shown that he was well worth the pick.

Verdict: Thumbs Up


No. 2 Overall: Chicago Bears, Quarterback Mitchell Trubisky

After trading several pieces to move up one spot to draft him, the Chicago Bears took a chance on North Carolina quarterback Mitchell Trubisky. While he’s shown early success in flashes, one of the biggest issues with him has been his consistency to do well.

Considering they traded up to grab him despite having the next pick, it was a mistake by Chicago. Trubisky could be good, but he’s falling deeper and deeper into the shadows of his draft class.

Verdict: Thumbs Down


No. 3 Overall: San Francisco 49ers, Defensive Tackle Solomon Thomas

After seemingly playing the Bears for fools and trading down a slot, San Francisco drafted defensive tackle Solomon Thomas out of Stanford. In the time since the draft, Thomas has been buried underneath a mountain of defensive line talent including Joey Bosa, DeForest Buckner and Dee Ford.

Since this was before the New England Patriots traded quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo to the Bay Area, it makes it a little more of a harder pill to swallow. At least they get six sacks and a Pro Football Focus grade of 56.6 though.

Verdict: Thumbs Down


No. 4 Overall: Jacksonville Jaguars, Halfback Leonard Fournette

When Jacksonville took Leonard Fournette, they took arguably the most hyped player in that draft class which paid off, kind of. When he’s played full seasons, he’s had over 1,000 rushing yards season.

He’s finished even finished in the top ten in rushing those two seasons. While Mahomes is a bigger threat than Blake Bortles is, Fournette has shown that he could be someone to build around.

Verdict: Thumbs Up


Photo courtesy to A to Z Sports Nashville

No. 5 Overall: Tennessee Titans, Wide Receiver Corey Davis

For one reason or another, Corey Davis has just not gotten to the level many fan’s thought he would. Having yet to break a 1,000 yards receiving season, he hasn’t quite been a bust but he hasn’t reached the level that was expected. Add to it that quarterback Marcus Mariota has been shown the same issue, it makes it all the more reason to wonder what Mahomes could have done in this Tennessee offense.

Verdict: Thumbs Down


No. 6 Overall: New York Jets, Safety Jamal Adams

Plain and simple, Jamal Adams has been the leader of this New York defense. While the quarterback situation in New York has gone from bad to worse over the years, Adams has been crucial of this teams identity and continues to be. Time will tell if Sam Darnold will pan out at quarterback but getting their defensive leader right is just as important.

Verdict: Thumbs Up


No. 7 Overall: Los Angeles Chargers, Wide Receiver Mike Williams

The Clemson product has been okay. Despite one season with 1,000 yards receiving, he’s been just okay. Here’s the problem, if Los Angeles took Mahomes, he’d probably have to wait an additional season or two before starting because of Phillip Rivers….and that would have been fine. Rivers has been an up and down quarterback in the years since, so there’s a good chance Mahomes would have started and probably taken that job.

Verdict: Thumbs Down


No. 8 Overall: Carolina Panthers, Halfback Christian McCaffrey

Perhaps the other player as valuable as Mahomes was to his team in this draft, Christian McCaffrey has been nothing short of stellar. He’s been a great runner, a good receiver and everything that a team should want in a running back. He’s always a threat for a 1,000 rushing-yard season and 1,000 receiving-yards season.

Verdict: Thumbs Up


No. 9 Overall: Cincinnati Bengals, Wide Receiver John Ross

Just no, Cincinnati blew this pick big time. Though the ten touchdowns are pretty and his 716 career yards are unimpressive, his 63.1 PFF score is mediocre. Keep in mind that Andy Dalton has been someone the Bengals have wanted gone for a while, passing on Mahomes here was a huge mistake. At least they get Joe Burrow though.

Verdict: Thumbs Down


No. 10 Overall: Buffalo Bills trade the pick to the Kansas City Chiefs

The picks acquired in this trade would result in cornerback Tre’Davious White, wide receiver Zay Jones and linebacker Tremaine Edmunds. Despite Jones getting traded to the Las Vegas Raiders the following season, the trade worked out as they got two big pieces of their defense.

Both have become Pro Bowlers in their first few seasons and they’ve helped make Buffalo’s defense scary again. While Mahomes would have made this team scary offensively, this may have worked out in their favor a bit.

Verdict: Thumbs Up

Eric Urbanowicz


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