Rapoport noted Mahomes' absence is expected to be "brief" after the MRI revealed no "significant additional damage" to the signal-caller's knee. Mahomes will reportedly seek additional opinions as he looks to determine the proper course of action for recovery.
Mahomes was injured five minutes into the second quarter of Thursday night's game against the Denver Broncos while picking up a first down on a quarterback sneak on 4th-and-1. He was taken to the locker room and immediately ruled out with a right knee injury.
The 24-year-old remained upbeat, however, according to Fox Sports' Erin Andrews:
After the game, he used social media to send out positive vibes:
Kansas City coach Andy Reid told reporters after the 30-6 victory he did not regret using his franchise cornerstone on a QB sneak: "Not too many people get hurt on a sneak. It's a freak thing, and it happens."
Following the game, a source told ESPN's Adam Schefter the "best case would be around three weeks." Ian Rapoport of NFL Network later confirmed "at least three weeks" was the expected recovery timetable.
In Mahomes' first year starting last season, the 2017 10th overall pick became the second player in NFL history to throw for 5,000 yards and 50 touchdowns in a season. The MVP led the Chiefs to a 12-4 record and the AFC West crown before falling to the eventual Super Bowl LIII champion New England Patriots in the AFC Championship Game in overtime.
Mahomes picked up where he left off, leading the league in both passing yards (2,180) and touchdowns (15, tied with the Atlanta Falcons' Matt Ryan) while helping Kansas City get off to a 5-2 start. He has just one interception in 241 pass attempts.
With Mahomes sidelined, journeyman Matt Moore will fill in. After coming in with a 10-6 lead, the veteran led the Chiefs to scores on two of his eight full drives.
The 35-year-old is 15-15 as a starter in his 12-year career, having previously started games for both the Carolina Panthers and Miami Dolphins. He has started more than five games in a single season just once, going 6-6 in Miami in 2011.
Moore was not on an NFL roster last season.
The Chiefs currently do not have anyone behind Moore on their depth chart, though rookie Kyle Shurmur—the son of New York Giants head coach Pat Shurmur—is on the practice squad after going undrafted in April.
Kansas City's bye week does not come until Week 12. Until then, the Chiefs will return home for contests against the Green Bay Packers and the Minnesota Vikings before hitting the road for clashes with the Tennessee Titans and the Los Angeles Chargers.