(Reuters) – Super Bowl-bound Kansas City Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes, whose dynamic play and infectious personality have made him the face of the NFL, is also building a legacy as one of the most impactful athletes of his generation.
Mahomes, who will seek the second Super Bowl title of his young career on Sunday, wants also to have an impact off the field and so has remained dedicated to using his platform to speak up on social justice issues.
“When he’s in football mode he’s in football mode. And outside of football he’s able to affect the community in such a positive way,” Chiefs quarterbacks coach Mike Kafka said on Tuesday.
“I’m so proud of him on that aspect in being able to give back to the community and stand up for what he believes in. I respect that and I’m proud that I am associated with Pat.”
The 25-year-old Mahomes, who would become the youngest quarterback to win two Super Bowl titles with a victory over the host Tampa Bay Buccaneers on Sunday, has said that while he loves football he also wants to make the world a better place.
A superb athlete with an unprecedented resume for a player his age, Mahomes has spoken out about police brutality, the Black Lives Matter movement and has launched a foundation to support children’s causes.
“He’s got a way about him where he understands people,” Chiefs head coach Andy Reid said about Mahomes. “They are interested in things that he has to say.
“I think that presents yourself with a good combination to whatever platform that you want to support or take.
Last year, Mahomes was named among Time Magazine’s “100 Most Influential People of 2020”, a list that includes world leaders, activists, recording artists and politicians.
The reigning Super Bowl MVP said he is not shy about reaching out to other high-profile athletes, including LeBron James, who has become the NBA’s leading voice for social justice.
“There’s a lot of great athletes that are doing things the right way. LeBron is one of them, he is someone that I can talk to and get advice from. But there’s others,” said Mahomes.
“There’s a ton of people that are using their voice to make a difference in this world and I try to take from them and kind of use my own voice in my own way to make an impact on my community.”
(Reporting by Frank Pingue in Toronto; Editing by Toby Davis)