There was no way to sugarcoat Sunday’s 42-37 loss to the Chiefs, and the Steelers didn’t even try.
Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes carved up the Pittsburgh defense, piling up six touchdowns and 326 yards in just his third NFL start.
Steelers linebacker Bud Dupree admitted that the defensive players believed they could take advantage of Mahomes’ lack of experience.
“I don’t think we gave him enough credit,” Dupree told ESPN’s Jeremy Fowler. “I think he was better than we thought. I feel like his intelligence was better than we thought. We thought since he was a young quarterback we could trick him, but he kind of spread us out. He didn’t snap the ball fast so he was really trying to read us, seeing where the weaknesses were before he snapped the ball. Many young quarterbacks can’t really check like that. He showed us otherwise.”
Dupree wasn’t the only Steelers defense player to praise Mahomes.
After Sunday’s game, cornerback Mike Hilton talked about the difficulty in stopping the Chiefs and why Mahomes is so dangerous.
“They got a lot of guys who can spread the field and they got (linebacker Travis) Kelce over the middle to go against linebackers and get mismatches and they got a quarterback who can pretty much put it anywhere,” Hilton told the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. “He utilizes everybody and he gets the ball out quick. We struggled covering.”
Cornerback Cory Sensabaugh also talked about Mahomes’ quick release after the game.
“They get it out quick and you gotta tackle the catch,” Sensabaugh told the Tribune-Democrat. “We just gotta keep guys in front of us in the secondary.
“Just keeping guys on the same page … We did some good things, but we didn’t do enough good things.”