KANSAS CITY, Mo. — The Chiefs welcome back the Cincinatti Bengals on Sunday for an AFC Championship rematch at GEHA Field at Arrowhead Stadium.
Joe Burrow, the only quarterback in the NFL to beat Patrick Mahomes three consecutive times, comes to Kansas City on Sunday with a trip to the Super Bowl on the line.
The Chiefs are feeling confident in their ability to avoid a four-game skid to Cincinatti, with just one outlier hanging over their heads: Will Patrick Mahomes be 100%?
Mahomes is currently nursing a high ankle sprain sustained during last Saturday's Divisional win over Jacksonville.
It was an injury bad enough to take Mahomes out of the game for the remainder of the first half.
With the possibility that Mahomes won't be at 100%, Chad Henne has entered the conversation.
Henne, the 37 year old backup for the Chiefs, took the team 98 yards to the endzone in a scoring drive without any false starts or penalties.
Mahomes re-entered and was able to finish out Kansas City's 27-20 win over the Jags, but his ability to play Sunday could be impacted.
Henne spoke with the media in the locker room Wednesday saying with all the unknown, he has to focus on staying ready if his number is called.
"I feel like I'm ready to step in at any given time," he said. "But you know I still have to stay up with my preparation and that gives me the confidence to play."
Henne added Mahomes has handled the injury like a pro.
"He's been great; obviously he is getting his rehab and getting things done, but at the same time when I came off to the sideline, he's right there seeing what he sees out in the field and helping me as well," Henne said.
Mahomes was listed as a full participant during practice Wednesday according to the Chiefs.
Mecole Hardman was limited in practice today. Everyone else was a full participant.— Kansas City Chiefs (@Chiefs) January 25, 2023
It's a step in the right direction from the outside looking in.
Henne also said that during this week's practice, he'll be on stand by ready to step up if needed.
"Whatever he feels — if he needs a break and needs to take some time off, I'll step in right away and see where we need to go from there," Henne said.
He added "He's (Mahomes) a warrior, I mean obviously we saw that last Sunday and he has done a great job of rehabbing these last couple of days, but his mindset is that he wants to play and he is gonna be ready to go."
On Thursday, more players will take the podium and head coach Andy Reid will provide his final thoughts on Friday, as the team continues prepping for the Bengals.