KC metro experts explain Mahomes' potential concussion diagnosis

Browns Chiefs Football
Posted at 9:46 PM, Jan 17, 2021

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Patrick Mahomes’ ability to stand up and return to the locker room following a mid-game collision during Sunday night’s AFC Divisional match up is a “reassuring sign,” according to a Kansas City metro doctor who specializes in sports medicine.

However, Dr. Kevin Gray, who practices at Truman Medical Center and is the team doctor for KC Roos Athletics, said that doesn’t mean his condition won’t worsen over time.

“That’s where they’re really going to closely monitor him and make sure that he is doing well and continues to do well and adjust as needed,” Gray said.

Minutes into the second half against the Cleveland Browns, Mahomes was hit in the back of the head by Cleveland linebacker Mack Wilson and had the wind knocked out of him, according to Chiefs head coach Andy Reid.

Reid said during a post-game press conference that Mahomes had passed all the tests he needed.

Chiefs cornerback Bashaud Breeland also was evaluated for a concussion during the game.

As of Sunday night, Mahomes had not been formally diagnosed with a concussion, but his symptoms were being monitored. He has been entered into the NFL’s concussion protocol, which states that players must wait at least five days to return to the field.

Still, Gray said it doesn’t necessarily take a big hit to cause a concussion.

“If we’ve got an egg and then shake it, the insides are juggling around but we don’t see a whole lot on the outside,” Gray said. “So even though there is not a massive force, that force is transmitted inside and so we can see some jiggling and hear some juggling inside the egg if we shake it.”

While a concussion diagnosis can seem easy to the public, dozens of signs and symptoms could “masquerade as other things, according to Aaron Borgmann, of Borgmann Rehab Solutions.

“If it is a concussion that triggers a whole nother set of what happens down the road in the coming days,” Borgmann, an athletic trainer, said. “The NFL has a very, very stringent protocol on how that all gets laid out and the Chiefs are actually one of the best in the league at following that.”

If Mahomes does receive a positive diagnosis, Borgmann said it’s “impossible” to know if he will have lingering side effects because everyone responds to concussions differently.

The NFL concussion protocol includes five stages:

1. Rest and recovery.
2. Light aerobic exercise.
3. More aerobic exercise, introducing strength training
4. Football-specific activities.
5. Full football activity and clearance.