2013 was a simpler time. For Tom Brady, that was one team and four Super Bowl appearances—five if you include his upcoming matchup with Kansas City—ago. Back in 2013, when Twitter was still in its infancy and no one had ever heard of Timothy Chalamet or Post Malone, Mahomes was a humble three-star recruit weighing scholarship offers from Rice, Texas Tech (the school he would ultimately attend) and Oklahoma State. Apparently Mahomes, then 18, was also quite passionate about his fantasy team, and liked to tweet about it.
You can probably guess where this is headed. Sports outlets such as our own have been uncovering all kinds of hidden gems in the buildup to next week’s fifth installment of Brady vs. Mahomes with the all-time series tied at two wins a piece. For instance, you may have seen this nugget shared by Jayson Jenks earlier this week:
Long before the two met on an NFL gridiron, Mahomes (just nine at the time) picked against Brady’s Patriots in Super Bowl XXXIX in a local newspaper, believing the Eagles, then led by Andy Reid (who now coaches Mahomes in Kansas City), to be the superior team. That prediction didn’t pan out with New England winning by a field goal, giving Brady his third Super Bowl ring in four seasons.
Mahomes and Brady would cross paths again—this time in the virtual realm—in 2013. Unaware of their looming NFL rivalry, Mahomes enlisted Brady as his fantasy quarterback, an experience that would prove surprisingly frustrating for the teenage prodigy.
With Brady in the midst of a rare dry spell—he entered Week 9 having averaged just 202.5 yards with two touchdowns and three interceptions over his previous four games—Mahomes invoked the Patriots star on Twitter, begging him for a bounce-back game against Pittsburgh. Brady came through for Mahomes, annihilating the Steelers for 432 yards and four touchdowns (including one to his future Buccaneers teammate Rob Gronkowski), both season-highs in a 55-31 New England rout. Brady wound up as the overall QB2 that week, rewarding his fantasy owners with 33.2 points. Mahomes' seven-year-old tweet was mysteriously deleted in the time it took me to post this article, but I guess that's what screenshots are for.
Mahomes was surely thankful for that performance, though his days of cheering on Brady are long over. The 25-year-old got the better of Brady when the two met earlier this year, gutting Tampa for 462 yards (269 of them to Tyreek Hill) on immaculate 37-of-49 passing (75.5 completion percentage) in a 27-24 Chiefs victory. Kansas City enters next week’s rematch as three-point favorites over the Bucs, who will become the first team in modern NFL history to play the Super Bowl in their home stadium.