Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes reported to training camp on Friday, sporting a throwback Kansas City Monarchs jersey as he rolled up to begin his sixth pro season.
But there’s still some question as to whether or not his left tackle will be there when the rest of the team’s veterans are slated to report on July 26.
Orlando Brown Jr. and the Chiefs could not come to a long-term agreement by the July 15 deadline after Kansas City placed the franchise tag on the left tackle in March. The organization is reportedly frustrated that Brown didn’t accept the club’s last offer earlier this month.
But at least publicly, Mahomes does not share that same sentiment.
“I talk to Orlando all the time. Me and him have a great relationship,” Mahomes said in his Friday press conference. “Obviously, we wanted to get the deal done, I’m sure he wanted to get the deal done and everything like that. But at the end of the day, we’re going to go out there and play football. And I’m excited for him to be here and be a part of the team again.”
That would seem to indicate that Mahomes believes Brown will report to training camp, despite Brown’s agent saying last week that the lineman is still weighing whether or not to do so. When asked directly if he thinks Brown will report, Mahomes essentially said he didn’t know.
“Obviously, I haven’t asked him anything like that, but you want him to be here just because of the guy he is,” Mahomes said. “He’s a leader on this football team. But at the same time, when it comes to money and contracts and stuff like that, I’ll never kind of force anyone to do anything because I know they’re trying to provide for their family long-term.
“But as a teammate and as a friend, you want him to be here and you want him to be a part of this because it’s always a good atmosphere when you’re out here in St. Joe’s and you’re getting to be in the building and eat together and practice together.”
Mahomes was also asked about Brown not being a true “team player,” and pushed back hard against it.
“I have no idea who said that,” Mahomes said. “He’s a great team player. He’s one of the smartest football players I think I’ve ever played with. He has a high IQ. I remember even when he wasn’t at OTAs, [he was] just asking me questions. He’s watching the film, he’s doing everything to make sure that when he steps here, he’s ready to go. And I think that comes with his dad playing in the league — he’s been around the sport his whole life. And you can ask anybody on this team, he’s one of the best guys on this team, if not the best one.”
The Chiefs acquired Brown from the Ravens in April 2021. He started 16 games for Kansas City last year and was selected to his third consecutive Pro Bowl.