San Francisco 49ers HC Kyle Shanahan first compared Kansas City Chiefs QB Patrick Mahomes to John Elway back in 2018 ahead of his first regular-season matchup against him.
He said the way he moves, throws the ball and looked in the pocket was reminiscent of Elway with the Denver Broncos. He would have a keen idea of that comparison too. His father, Mike Shanahan, was the head coach of the Broncos from 1995 to 2008 and won consecutive titles with Elway in Super Bowl XXXII and Super Bowl XXXIII.
Ahead of the Chiefs’ Week 7 tilt with the 49ers, Kyle was asked about watching tape on Mahomes and his improvisation skills. It again elicited the comparison to Elway.
“Just because you don’t ever see people play like that really,” Shanahan explained. “There’s not many people in the history of football as good as him. Reminds me of [Hall of Fame QB John] Elway a ton watching him. Just how he’s a top thrower on the planet and the way he can move. He’s not always doing it just with a flat-out 40, just running away from people, but the way he feels space and can create time and as he does it, his vision down the field with that arm talent is tough to deal with.”
Shanahan isn’t the only one to make this Elway comparison. Another quarterback who knows Elway quite well — a guy by the name of Peyton Manning — made the comparison back in July of 2019.
It’s high praise coming from the 49ers’ head coach and it’ll certainly be a challenge for him and his defense to prepare for a quarterback like Mahomes. Shanahan is 0-2 against Mahomes in his career, including Super Bowl LIV. Will Shanahan be able to turn the tides against Mahomes in Week 7 or will the all-world quarterback still best San Francisco?