Baltimore Ravens cornerback Marcus Peters got an up-close and personal look at Kansas City Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes when the budding passer was still just a rookie. And much like the rest of the league, Peters was impressed by what he saw.
“I knew he had the talent,” Peters said Thursday. “I knew he loved the game. So that’s two ultimate things that can help you. I just respect somebody who loves the game of football like he does.”
Mahomes is well known for having the mobility to escape pressure and make big plays with the cannon he calls an arm. But perhaps the most tantalizing part of Mahomes’ game has been his no-look pass — something defensive backs have feared and hated since he was a rookie, according to Peters.
“I remember when he first started throwing the damn no-look pass at practice and he’s been doing it since he was a rookie,” Peters continued. “So, the dude is amazing.”
With that talent has come plenty of accolades for Mahomes. He won the Offensive Player of the Year award in 2018, he’s been nominated to two Pro Bowls, one first-team All-Pro roster, as well as winning the 2018 NFL MVP award and Super Bowl LIV. There’s a reason Mahomes is one of the star players of the NFL in 2020.
But Peters is pretty good in his own right too, getting named to three Pro Bowls, two first-team All-Pro squads, and earning the 2015 Defensive Rookie of the Year award. In his five previous seasons in the NFL, Peters has amassed 27 interceptions, returning six for touchdowns. He even picked off Mahomes in a win over his former team as a member of the Los Angeles Rams in 2018.
The Ravens are going to need Peters and the rest of the defense to be at their best to stop Mahomes and this very dangerous Chiefs offense. While Peters has a little experience going up against Mahomes in practice every day and battling against him in 2018, he was quick to note the entire defense is going to have to chip in to get the job done.
“I think the beautiful thing about football is that it’s a team game. So for us, it’s going to start with us having the d-line doing their job of keeping him in the pocket — containing him — and us on the backend plastering and getting into our coverage.”
That’s something Baltimore couldn’t do last season, losing to Kansas City 33-28 in Week 3. However, that was before the Ravens traded for Peters, and well before they added defensive linemen Calais Campbell and Derek Wolfe. With a revamped defense, Baltimore is hoping to pull off a big win over an equally big opponent. But make no mistake, to win against the Chiefs means the Ravens need to beat Mahomes and that’s no small task.
“He’s a Super Bowl champ, he’s an MVP of this league,” Peters continued. “He’s a hell of a player, man, and a guy like that, you’ve gotta respect his game.”