In April of 2018, long before Patrick Mahomes was the NFL’s MVP, his college coach, Kliff Kingsbury, predicted his former quarterback would be the richest player in all of football.
Tuesday, Jeremy Cluff of the Arizona Republic unearthed radio audio of Kingsbury talking about the former Texas Tech star.
“The sky’s the limit,” Kingsbury told the ThomaHawk Show hosted by Joe Thomas and Andrew Hawkins. “I got to watch him three years in practice and he just made throw after throw…. I truly believe he’ll be the highest-paid player in the history of the game when his contract comes up.”
Well…. Mahomes’ contract came up this week and the Chiefs gave him a 10-year deal that could reportedly pay him $500 million.
It wasn’t the only correct forecasting for Kingsbury.
While at Texas Tech, he said that if he were an NFL head coach he would select Oklahoma’s Kyler Murray with the No. 1 pick in the draft. A few months later, the Cardinals, with Kingsbury as newly appointed head coach, did just that.
Kingsbury knows QBs. Does that make him the right coach for the Cardinals?
Past evidence suggests that he can spot talent but not win with it.
In the defense deficient Big XII, Kingsbury went 7-5 with Baker Mayfield as his quarterback.
The next two years, with Mahomes, he was 12-13.
His first year with the Cardinals and Kyler Murray — who was named Offensive Rookie of the Year — ended with a 5-10-1 record
The NFL’s commitment to player safety has made life easier on the kind of West Coast offense Kingsbury runs, and he has shown an ability to develop young quarterbacks for this era. But all those things were true at Texas Tech, and Kingsbury couldn’t win enough there to keep his job.
Kingsbury might be more of a QB coach than head coach.