Chiefs QB Patrick Mahomes: right ankle is ‘in a better position’ for Super Bowl

Mahomes left no doubt as to whether he’ll play in Sunday’s Super Bowl, right high ankle sprain or not.

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Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes talks at the Footprint Center on Monday.

Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes talks at the Footprint Center on Monday.

Christian Petersen/Getty Images

PHOENIX — Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes left no doubt as to whether he’ll play in the Super Bowl, high ankle sprain or not.

“I’ll play through all the injuries the trainers let me play through,” he said Monday at Super Bowl opening night.

Translation: The right high ankle sprain Mahomes suffered against the Jaguars in the divisional round didn’t cost him a down in the AFC title game against the Bengals, and he doesn’t expect it to against the Eagles.

“It’s definitely in a better position than it was at this time before the last game,” he said.

He said he’d do everything in his power to make sure it was 100% on Sunday.

Mahomes was hurt when he was tackled against the Jaguars. Backup quarterback Chad Henne took his place, throwing seven passes, before Mahomes eventually returned in the 27-20 win.

He didn’t receive a pain-killing shot before the title game win against the Bengals. Mahomes was hobbled at times but still went 29-for-43 for 326 yards, two touchdowns and a 105.4 passer rating. He fumbled once.

His five-yard scramble with 17 seconds to play — and subsequent 15-yard penalty on a late hit — set up the Chiefs’ game-winning field goal.

“It didn’t shock us when he made that run at the end,” said Chiefs quarterbacks coach Matt Nagy, the former Bears head coach. “First of all, we knew with him that something good was going to happen. Once we got the ball back we knew we were going to win. That’s just who he is.”

Elliott ready

Eagles kicker Jake Elliott is acting like he’s been here before — because he has.

The Lyons Township alum has played six seasons and reached the Super Bowl twice.

Five years ago, Elliott made all three field goals — including a 42-yarder and 46-yarder in the fourth quarter — to clinch a 41-33 win against the Patriots.

That experience is valuable this week, he said.

“Just knowing what to expect throughout the week, so there’s no extra distractions,” he said. “Just making sure you’re focused on the game.”

He allowed himself to enjoy Super Bowl opening night, even chatting up PGA Tour star Justin Thomas on the floor of the Footprint Center. Thomas is playing in the Phoenix Open this week.

“It’s all fun right now, but it’s still game week and we want to focus,” said Elliott, who was 20-for-23 in field goals this season. “In a way, it’s easy. You know why you’re here.”

This and that

The circus now known as Super Bowl opening night returned Monday after a three-year hiatus prompted by the coronavirus. Players and staff from both teams conducted interviews in front of legitimate media but also men wearing wrestling masks, barrels and mascot costumes. The loudest ovation was for Donna Kelce, whose sons Travis and Jason will face each other Sunday.

• The Chiefs activated running back Clyde Edwards-Helaire from injured reserve Monday. He had out since Week 11 with a high ankle sprain. The second-year player slots in as the team’s third running back.

To make room, the team put returner/receiver Mecole Hardman on IR with a pelvic injury. Hardman sat out almost half the season with the problem — he was injured Week 9 — but returned for the AFC title game against the Bengals. He left the game after being tackled following a catch.

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