2022-10-15 · 4 min read · NFL/Football
Patrick Mahomes / Kansas City Chiefs and Josh Allen / Buffalo Bills

AP PhotoJoshua Bessex | Jamie SquireGetty Images

Throughout many generations of NFL football, we have seen our share of great quarterback rivalries, from Steve Young vs Troy Aikman, Joe Montana and Phil Simms, Tom Brady against Peyton Manning, Bart Starr and Johnny Unitas, Bobby Lane- Otto Graham, Terry Bradshaw and Ken Stabler, plus Jim Kelly versus Dan Marino just to name a few.
One of the great rivalries which are starting to shape up is Patrick Mahomes of the Kansas City Chiefs against Josh Allen with the Buffalo Bills.
Both of these AFC pivots have high expectations on their shoulders to guide their respective teams to a Super Bowl title this year.
They are each at the top of their division with 4-1 records, and on Sunday, it will no doubt be the game to keep an eye out for, given the recent history when these two superstars face off.
Here is a look at their head-to-head rivalry and what each brings to the table.
Head to Head
Sunday will be the fourth all-time meeting between these two QBs, with the previous matchup being a playoff showcase with a lot more at stake than they will each have in Week Six.
Mahomes has a slight edge in the head-to-head battle, capturing the AFC Championship game against them in 2021 (38-24), with Allen and the Bills getting a measure of revenge in the early portion of their last regular season affair a year ago, winning 38-20.
Their AFC Divisional showdown last season is a game that no NFL fan will soon forget as Arrowhead witnessed perhaps the best back-and-forth playoff contest in league history.
In that memorable encounter, Allen threw for 329 yards, four touchdowns, and rushing for 68 yards, while Mahomes was equally if not more impressive, tossing three TD passes, throwing for 378 yards and running for another 69 on the ground, including a rushing touchdown.
If not for a controversial rule that the team who gets the ball first in OT can win on a touchdown, that game might still be going on today, and it was one of those encounters where neither quarterback blinked, but in the end, KC walked away with a 42-36 triumph.
The lead in that game changed hands three times in the final two minutes alone, which gives us an idea of just how even a match this was, like a classic game of Ping-Pong.
Both QB's threw for at least 300 yards and three scores, had at least 65 yards on the ground, and both completed a minimum of 70% of their passes with zero interceptions.
No quarterbacks in NFL history had ever achieved such a feat before in either the regular or postseason.
By the numbers
Not only are these quarterbacks arguably two of the most accurate and efficient in the league, but they both also have statistics which are eerily similar to one another.
Last year, Mahomes had the slight edge in terms of passing, but Allen did more with his legs.
The former Super Bowl champion Mahomes threw for 5,220 yards and 39 TD passes last season, while Allen threw for 5,170 yards and 42 major scores.
Mahomes’ regular season record in 2021 was 12-5, while Allen was just behind him at 11-6.
Allen had a decisive edge in the run game with 763 yards on the ground, compared to the 381 put up by Mahomes, with the Bills pivot running for six touchdowns, while Mahomes ran for two.
So far in 2022, Mahomes has 126 completions to Allen’s 133, the Chiefs QB has a completion percentage of 66.7%, with the Buffalo pivot ahead of him by a nose at 66.8%.
Allen has thrown for 1,651 yards, while Mahomes has thrown for 1,398 yards, with Allen throwing 14 touchdown passes and four picks, with his counterpart tossing just two interceptions.
They have both been sacked eight times, and Mahomes has a narrow advantage when you crunch all of the numbers with a quarterback rating of 110.5 as opposed to Allen, whose rating is 107.4.
Like any great rivalry, there is very little to choose between these two.
Top Weapons
On the ground, Mahomes might have some more dependable backs to count on as Clyde Edwards-Helaire has 50 carries for 223 yards, while Allen has 225 yards on the ground in 2022, compared to the 92 for Mahomes.
The next leading rusher for the Bills would be Devin Singletary, who has 40 touches for 171 yards.
In the air, Mahomes has had to go down the field more often after his big underneath threat from seasons past, Tyreek Hill, signed with the Miami Dolphins.
As you might expect, his favourite target in 2022 has been Travis Kelce, as those two have been like yin and yang since becoming teammates, with the Chiefs tight end catching 33 passes for 347 yards and seven touchdowns so far this year.
On the Bills’ side, no surprise as Stefon Diggs is their leading pass catcher, with 39 receptions for 508 yards and five TDs.
Regarding secondary receivers, the Chiefs have Marquez Valdes-Scantling and Juju Smith-Schuster, who have 258 and 257 yards receiving, respectively, while the Bills have Gabe Davis with 309 yards receiving and Isaiah McKenzie has 153.
Like the quarterback comparison between these two, this could be a close game and I expect each side neck and neck throughout the 60 minutes.
While the Chiefs have not lost at Arrowhead this season, Buffalo suffered their only defeat of the year so far away from home.
Both offences have been potent throughout 2022, but I am giving the Chiefs a slight edge because there is one distinction between this team compared to the Andy Reid teams of the past in KC.
Kansas City’s ability to shut down the run means you can’t rely on long drives to keep the ball out of Mahomes’ hands as long as possible.
You have to be efficient through the air against this team, and I believe Allen will be, but the Chiefs’ strength on the ground, while also having home field this weekend and being stingy against the run, has me leaning toward them.
Allen, however, has shown an ability to put a team on his shoulders and run the ball efficiently, but I think overall, the Chiefs will narrowly win on Sunday.
I expect a lot of razzle-dazzle in this game and an entertaining back-and-forth contest, with the Chiefs pulling out a 42-37 victory.
Regardless of what transpires on Sunday, this is shaping up to be the next great rivalry in the NFL, with two players who already look destined to win some Super Bowls in the future and make it into the hall of fame.
Sports Tree Profile

By: Joel Lefevre


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