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Chiefs Pre-Camp Breakdown: Evaluating the QB Room Behind Patrick Mahomes

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— WRITTEN BY MATT McMULLEN – CHIEFS.COM —

KANSAS CITY, Mo. (Chiefs.com) – The Kansas City Chiefs are set to kick off training camp in less than a month, and with the annual trek to St. Joseph nearly here, we’re going to spend the next month examining every position group on the roster heading into camp.

We’ll begin at quarterback, where the Chiefs employ the league’s best player in Patrick Mahomes. The 28-year-old Mahomes has won Super Bowl MVP honors in each of the last two seasons, becoming the first player to do so since Terry Bradshaw from 1979 to 1980.

Mahomes – who already has two NFL MVP and three Super Bowl MVP awards under his belt – also owns the league marks for touchdown passes (219) and passing yards (28,424) through 100 career regular season games in NFL history, and he did so despite only starting 96 games so far in his career.

Mahomes is undeniably on track to end his career as one of the greatest players the game has ever seen, and despite his immense resume, the best may still be yet to come.

Behind Mahomes, the Chiefs currently have three quarterbacks under contract who will compete for an opportunity to make the regular-season roster. Let’s take a look at each, beginning with veteran signal caller Carson Wentz.

Carson Wentz

The Chiefs signed the 31-year-old Wentz back in April to serve as Mahomes’ primary backup in 2024. Wentz, who was the No. 2 overall pick in the 2016 NFL Draft, made one start for the Los Angeles Rams last season, completing 17-of-24 passes for 163 yards and two touchdowns.

Wentz is best remembered for his time in Philadelphia, where he threw for 16,811 yards and 113 touchdowns across 68 starts from 2016 through 2020. Notably, Wentz was named a Second-Team All-Pro and finished third in MVP voting in 2017 before earning the No. 3 overall spot in the “NFL Top 100” rankings prior to the 2018 campaign.

Following his time with the Eagles, Wentz went on to start 24 games between Indianapolis and Washington from 2021 through 2022 before joining the Rams ahead of last season.

Overall, Wentz has thrown for at least 27 touchdowns three times in his eight years as a professional – doing so most recently for the Colts in 2021 – and he owns a winning record (47-45-1) in his 93 career starts.

It’s all to say that he brings valuable experience and talent to the Chiefs’ quarterback room as a veteran presence behind Mahomes.

For more on Wentz, click here.

Chris Oladokun

Oladokun returns to Kansas City for a third year after spending each of the last two seasons on the Chiefs’ practice squad. He has yet to appear in a game, but it’s worth mentioning that Oladokun has often been credited for his work as the scout team quarterback during the Chiefs’ weekly preparation for various opponents.

Prior to his career in the NFL, Oladokun spent time at the University of South Florida (2016-18), Samford University (2019-20) and South Dakota State (2021). His final season was perhaps his best, as Oladokun threw for 3,164 yards and 25 touchdowns in 15 games for the Jackrabbits. He also demonstrated an ability to be an effective dual-threat quarterback during his collegiate career, notably racking up nearly 500 rushing yards and eight rushing touchdowns for Samford in 2019.

Ian Book

Book joined the Chiefs as a “Reserve/Future” signee back on January 10. Originally a fourth-round pick of the New Orleans Saints in the 2021 NFL Draft, Book started one game for New Orleans (marking his only career appearance) during his rookie year. He completed 12-of-20 passes for 135 yards and two interceptions in the contest.

Book was waived following training camp ahead of the 2022 season but was immediately claimed by Philadelphia, where he spent the entirety of the campaign in a reserve role and did not play. He then spent time on the Patriots’ practice squad this past season, but did not appear in a game.

Prior to heading to the NFL, Book was an accomplished quarterback at Notre Dame. Here’s a portion of Book’s draft profile from The Athletic’s Dane Brugler back in 2021:

“A two-time team captain, he posted a 30-5 career record (15-0 at home) and leaves South Bend No. 2 (behind Brady Quinn) in almost every passing category, including yards (8,948) and touchdowns (72). Although undersized, Book is a gutsy dual-threat passer with quick feet and natural throwing skills on the move…He projects as an NFL reserve capable of locking down a backup job.”

The Bottom Line

Wentz enters training camp as the Chiefs’ backup quarterback due to his experience and pedigree in the league, but the competition between Oladokun and Book for the third spot on the depth chart – whether that be on the active roster or the practice squad – will be one to watch.

Oladokun, in particular, deserves credit for manning a significant role during his time with the Chiefs, even if it may be somewhat of a hidden responsibility to the public eye. For example, because of league rules, Mahomes and Wentz were not permitted to attend rookie minicamp in early May due to their service time as professionals. Oladokun, however, was allowed to attend the camp and served as the veteran in the huddle throughout the weekend of practices.

He spoke about that responsibility following rookie minicamp:

“I take it as another opportunity to get better…It’s something that I want to do,” Oladokun said. “Especially in my role as a third guy, the reps are slim, so to come out here – no matter who is out here – is just another opportunity. It’s good for me not only to be able to run the offense and be able to spearhead everything, but also to be a teacher…[It’s my] third year in the system, and so now it’s just about going out there and producing when I get my opportunities.”

Oladokun will have a chance to build on that experience in training camp as he competes with Book for the third spot in the quarterback room.

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