By now, you’ve probably heard former Chiefs linebacker Tamba Hali's enthusiastic endorsement of quarterback Patrick Mahomes.
Chiefs fans were buzzing when Hali went so far as to compare Mahomes to legendary Packers quarterback Brett Favre. The resume for Favre includes a Super Bowl win, three MVP awards, 71,838 career passing yards and 508 touchdowns.
But how did Favre do in his first season as a starter? It’s worth examining, because Mahomes will be taking the reins full time this fall.
Favre turned 23 during the 1992 season (Mahomes’ 23rd birthday is Sept. 17), but he began as backup to Don Majkowski. Favre saw action in the Packers’ second game of the season, a 31-3 loss at Tampa Bay, and his first completion was to himself.
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The following week, Majkowski was injured and Favre saw his first substantial action. But as the Journal-Sentinel later noted in a retrospective, Favre "was at fault on all four of his fumbles, blew multiple blitz reads and put the team into some bizarre formations that left (coach Mike) Holmgren a frazzled wreck."
"I was wondering if they were going to run me out of town," Favre told the Journal Sentinel. "I told James Campen on the sidelines, 'It's good I'm getting hit like I am because it brings you to your senses.' I was shaking. I felt like I took a laxative. Thank God I held it till afterward."
That game was memorable for what happened in the fourth quarter: Favre threw two touchdown passes as the Packers rallied for a 24-23 victory over the Bengals. He completed 22 of 39 passes for 289 yards on the day.
The following week, Favre made his first NFL start and helped the Packers beat the Steelers 17-3. He threw for 210 yards and two touchdowns as Green Bay improved to 2-2.
However, the Packers lost their next three games and scored just 26 points. After a win snapped the skid, Green Bay was routed 27-7 by the Giants as Favre threw three interceptions and the Packers' record dropped to 3-5.
The Packers rebounded and won six straight games, with Favre completing 113 of 170 passes (66.5 percent) for 1,264 yards with 10 touchdowns and four interceptions.
Heading into the season finale, the Packers had a shot to make the playoffs with a win over the Vikings.
Instead, Favre threw three interceptions, and Minnesota rolled to a 27-7 victory.
"I learned some things going against a great defense like this," Favre told reporters. "It wasn't one of my better games."
Favre completed 64.1 percent of his passes for 3,227 yards, 18 touchdowns and 13 interceptions in that first season.
Obviously, the Favre-Mahomes comparison can’t be seen as apples to apples. For starters, the Chiefs have a better supporting cast around Mahomes.
Vince Workman was the Packers' main rusher, averaging 4.0 yards per carry. Darrell Thompson and Edgar Bennett each saw action, but the Packers’ average of 3.7 yards per rush was a full yard fewer than the Chiefs last season.
Mahomes will have the NFL’s reigning rushing leader in the backfield in Kareem Hunt, which should help.
Packers receiver Sterling Sharpe had a sensational season in 1992, catching 106 passes for 1,461 yards and 13 touchdowns. Tight end Jackie Harris was the next leading receiver (595 yards), but no other receiver had more than 152 total yards for the season.
Tyreek Hill, Travis Kelce, Sammy Watkins and Chris Conley should give Mahomes a better receiving corps than Favre had in 1992.
Favre made the Pro Bowl that season, an indication of how well he played. But he struggled at times. Ditto for 1993, when Favre started all 16 games for the first time and led the league in ... interceptions (24), while throwing 19 touchdowns.
However, the Packers made the playoffs for the first time in a nonstrike season in 21 years.
It didn’t come easy. Favre tossed four interceptions in the regular-season finale against the Lions, and the Packers opened the postseason in Detroit. But Favre threw an astonishing, across-the-field 40-yard touchdown pass to Sharpe in the game's final minute to secure a 28-24 victory.
"Last week, everyone gave up on me, except the people that counted," Favre told reporters. "That's why this feels so good."
The last laugh in the playoffs? That's something Chiefs fans haven't been able to do for a while, and it explains why there is hope that Mahomes is the second coming of Favre.