Sunday Night Football in Week 5 will be a showcase for Patrick Mahomes and Josh Allen. Mahomes and Allen represent two of the NFL's faces over the next decade. The Kansas City Chiefs and Buffalo Bills are fortunate to have Mahomes and Allen and will be in contention for years to come.
But as the two prepare to face one another, it's fair to wonder who the best quarterback of the two will be in five years. Both players have a case to make and are still relatively young enough to improve.
Making the case for Patrick Mahomes
Patrick Mahomes was drafted a year ahead of Allen but only played in one game in 2017. He just turned 26 years old in September and won an MVP award in 2018. Since 2018, Patrick Mahomes has been the best quarterback in the NFL. He has all the arm strength needed to make deep passes and does it with accuracy.
Patrick Mahomes has always been accurate and rarely misses open throws. He's taken his accuracy to a whole new level this season by taking what the defense gives him. He's averaging a career-high 72.3 completion percentage. He's learned to take check-downs and short passes. He's still capable of big plays, but he doesn't force them as much anymore.
Finding flaws in Patrick Mahomes' game is difficult. He has every physical tool an NFL quarterback can have. At this point, his progression going forward will be mental. Patrick Mahomes will learn to adjust pass protection and read defenses better as he grows older.
His ceiling is the greatest quarterback of all time. As long as Tyreek Hill and Travis Kelce play with Mahomes, the sky is the limit. Andy Reid is the perfect coach to continue pushing Mahomes to be better as well. He's in a great environment and will be an MVP favorite every year.
Making the case for Josh Allen
Allen may not have burst onto the scene in 2018 as Patrick Mahomes did. But his yearly progression is something to marvel at. Every year since he entered the league, he's thrown for more touchdowns and a higher completion percentage than the year before.
In 2020, Allen showed he can be an MVP candidate. He had more votes than Patrick Mahomes. He threw for 4,544 yards, 37 touchdowns, and ten interceptions. His deep ball is better than Mahomes' deep ball. Allen is also one of the best running quarterbacks in the league.
Since 2018, Allen has 1,691 rushing yards and 26 rushing touchdowns. He's a weapon in the red zone with his legs as much as he is his arm. The biggest knock on Allen is the lack of touch he has on some of his throws.
Allen slings the ball with a lot of force, sometimes so much that it bounces off his target's hands. He will learn, as Mahomes did, to take check-downs and take what the defense gives him. He's in a well-run organization and has stout weapons in Stefon Diggs and Emmanuel Sanders. He's only 25 and will continue to get better.
Which quarterback will be better in five years?
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As good as Allen's development has been, surpassing Mahomes is an impossible feat. Allen will be 30, and Mahomes will be 31 in five years. Mahomes has more physical gifts than Allen. In five years, Mahomes will have seen it all and will mentally be sharp.
Allen will grow in that department as well. But Mahomes benefits from having Reid as his coach. Sean McDermott is a tremendous coach but is defensive-minded. Reid will evolve and adjust with Mahomes and their supporting cast. While Mahomes might be better off, these two could easily be the best two quarterbacks in football five years from now.
Q. Who will be the better NFL quarterback in five years?