It hasn't been easy for Patrick Mahomes to get a read on which teams like him the most, but Texans coach Bill O'Brien is one he has a strong feeling about. Mahomes was in Houston to meet with Texans officials Monday, and amid reports that O'Brien is a big fan of the former Texas Tech quarterback, Mahomes got a similar sense himself.
"I feel like a lot of coaches like me, but especially coach O'Brien. I think my personality and how real I am, those are things beyond what I can do on the field that he likes," Mahomes said. "It seemed like the way I was answering questions, I think he knew that I knew what was going on. You can tell when coaches have a confidence in you."
Four clubs scheduled him for both a pre-draft visit and a private workout: the Arizona Cardinals, Chicago Bears, Cleveland Browns and New York Jets. That, he believes, is sign of strong interest, as well.
"I felt like the visits with most of those clubs came after I had a good workout, and they invited me afterward. That tells me they saw something they liked and they want to know you a little better," Mahomes said.
With a whirlwind tour of club visits and an aggressive schedule of private workouts nearly complete -- Mahomes said got in front of NFL clubs 21 times, counting dinner meetings -- he now has an understanding of why teams were so interested.
"I think the reason they looked into me so hard is that I'm so different than other quarterbacks. I have my own unique way of playing, and it works. They wanted to see if I had the knowledge, background and drive to be a great quarterback in the NFL," he said.
It was exhausting and hectic, but the value he drew from so much face time with NFL coaches can't be measured.
"I got to talk with some of the great offensive minds in football. Bruce Arians, Byron Leftwich, Andy Reid, Ben McAdoo, Bill O'Brien, I met all those guys and tried to take something away from each of them," Mahomes said. "Hue Jackson, people that are known for developing quarterbacks, I got exposed to a lot of stuff I hadn't seen before. Even Jon Gruden, who I met doing the QB Camp show, I was able to pick his brain too."
Now, it's nearly time for an NFL team to do the picking, with the draft (April 27-29 in Philadelphia) just about a week away. And after seven long weeks since the NFL Scouting Combine, he's ready to get the call.