Analysis

Should Chiefs Take This Quarterback Debate Seriously?

Is there any point in debating between the Chiefs quarterback and Tua Tagovailoa? We don't think so, and neither should you.

It would be an understatement to say that Tyreek Hill has stirred the pot since his Kansas City Chiefs departure. On his new podcast, he made quite the claim:

To be fair, Tyreek never said that Tua is a better quarterback than Patrick Mahomes, but he did say that Tua is more accurate. So, do the statistics agree with Tyreek? Is it possible that Tua is a better quarterback or a better fit for Tyreek than Mahomes?

Do The Chiefs Have The More Accurate QB In Patrick Mahomes?

Let’s start with what Hill mentioned; accuracy. Based on completion percentage, Tua does edge out Mahomes by a 1.5% difference. However, Tua attempted almost 300 fewer passes than Patrick Mahomes. He also missed five games to injury, but the Dolphins’ offense also isn’t as pass-happy as the Andy Reid system. Tua finished the season averaging about 200 passing yards a game while Mahomes finished with an average of 284 yards a game, a career-low.

Instead of looking just at accuracy let’s look a little deeper. Tua threw 16 touchdowns against 10 interceptions. Whereas Mahomes threw 37 touchdowns to 13 interceptions. Only three more interceptions for the Chiefs’ QB, but 21 more touchdowns.

To be fair to Tua, based on even the advanced statistics, was slightly more accurate than Mahomes. Of course, this doesn’t factor in the time Tua missed but the Chiefs also had a better offensive line and better pass-catchers overall than the Dolphins.

Despite technically being more accurate, Tua is also more accurate in throwing to the other team. He’s also much less likely to throw touchdowns. So, while Tyreek isn’t wrong based on pure statistics he may still come to regret his decision.

Do The Chiefs Have The Smarter Quarterback In Mahomes?

Let’s go a step further. Between Mahomes and Tua which has the better football IQ? Some have even compared Tua to NFL legend Drew Brees who is known for his high IQ in picking apart defenses. The comparison isn’t quite fitting just yet though.

Patrick Mahomes is easily the higher IQ player as of this moment. Mahomes has been in the league three more years than Tua and has gotten to spend his career with Andy Reid. Last season was the first time we witnessed Mahomes “struggle.” The Chiefs had to change their offensive game plan last year, and Mahomes gunslinger mentality got him into some trouble at points. Despite all that, in an “off-year” he still put up all-pro level numbers.

As mentioned previously, Tua has a very high touchdown-to-interception ratio. He’s also only been in the league two years and has much more learning to do. New Head Coach Mike McDaniel could very well do wonders for Tua going forward. The Dolphins certainly have the offensive pieces now and there will be no excuse if Tua doesn’t excel.

Arm Strength Isn’t A Debate When It Comes To The Chiefs QB

Even Hill wouldn’t argue that Patrick Mahomes has a stronger arm. There’s not much to debate here. Tua has an NFL arm, but he likely falls in the bottom half of the league as far as arm strength. Arm strength isn’t everything, but it does make life easier as a quarterback.

Mahomes only real rivals as far as pure arm strength are Josh Allen and Justin Herbert. At the end of the day, it doesn’t matter if you have a strong arm but no accuracy. Luckily for the Chiefs, Mahomes has both. With the addition of Tyreek Hill perhaps we will see more arm strength from Tua than we previously did. We can’t rule it out entirely.

Chiefs Are Focused More On Season Ahead Than Hill’s Podcast

It should be obvious to anyone that Mahomes is the better QB at this point in his career. Hill chose a paycheck over staying with the Chiefs, and there’s nothing wrong with that. There’s no way the wide receiver is going to badmouth his new quarterback by saying he misses Mahomes, or that he has regrets about the trade. It’s time for both sides to move on, and wish the best for both parties.

The Chiefs have much bigger things to worry about than what their former top receiver is saying. Many teams in the AFC have decided to go all-in, and the Chiefs have a lot of moving pieces on both offense and defense. Losing Hill hurts, but he wasn’t going to be around forever anyway.

To see our thoughts on Mahomes MVP odds click here.


Is there any merit to a debate between Tua Tagovailoa and Patrick Mahomes? Leave a comment down below to join the discussion.

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