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Will Patrick Mahomes play on Sunday?

Chiefs coach Andy Reid said that Patrick Mahomes is in concussion protocol after exiting their divisional matchup against the Browns, but Kansas City might not have their QB back in time for the AFC Championship.

When the NFL first implemented specific procedures for allowing players with concussions to return to action more than a decade ago, a loose presumption emerged that a player who suffered a concussion would miss at least one game. Eventually, the presumption flipped, with most players making it back to action in the next game after suffering the head injury.

For Chiefs quarterback Patriots Mahomes, the question becomes whether he’ll receive appropriate clearance from an independent neurologist before Sunday night’s game against the Bills.

According to the NFL, 29 quarterbacks suffered concussions from 2015 through 2019. The median numbers of days missed by those 29 quarterbacks was seven.

“Keep in mind as doctors will say, if you’ve seen one concussion, you’ve seen one concussion,” the NFL added in its email to PFT. “Every case is different based on the severity and the person.”

Mahomes will be monitored and checked and either cleared, or not cleared, to practice and eventually to play by an independent neurologist. Beyond the concussion, Mahomes also struggled with a toe injury before exiting the game. So even if he’s able to play after the concussion, Mahomes could be impaired by the toe problem.

The injury reports generated on Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday will shed plenty of light on the question of whether Mahomes will be able to play. If he’s not, Chad Henne will get the assignment. Whoever plays will have to find a way to outduel Bills quarterback Josh Allen.