KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) — Patrick Mahomes took the majority of first-team reps in practice Thursday, even though he remains in the NFL’s concussion protocol, raising expectations that he will start in the AFC championship game against the Buffalo Bills. Mahomes was initially listed as a full participant when he returned to practice Wednesday, but the Chiefs quickly corrected his status to limited because he remains in the protocol. He must be cleared by team physicians and an independent neural consult before the reigning Super Bowl MVP can be a full participant in practice or play in a game.
KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) — Ten years after firing Sean McDermott as his defensive coordinator, Kansas City Chiefs coach Andy Reid will stare across the field inside Arrowhead Stadium on Sunday and see his protégé trying to spoil his hopes of a Super Bowl repeat. That's because McDermott has Buffalo playing in its first AFC title game since beating Kansas City on Jan. 23, 1994, when the Bills advanced to their fourth consecutive Super Bowl. Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes appears to be poised to play after sustaining a concussion last week, setting up a tantalizing matchup with Bills counterpart Josh Allen.
MEMPHIS, Tenn. (AP) — Landers Nolley II had 16 points and seven rebounds, and Moussa Cisse had 12 points and 10 rebounds to lift Memphis to a 72-52 win over Wichita State. Alex Lomax also scored 12 points for Memphis. DeAndre Williams had 10 points and five assists. The Shockers’ 29.9 field-goal percentage represented the worst mark by a Memphis opponent this season. Ricky Council IV had 13 points and seven rebounds for the Shockers, which scored just 19 points in the first half. Morris Udeze added 10 points and Dexter Dennis had six rebounds.
UNDATED (AP) — The Big 12′s best team this season faces off with arguably its best player on Saturday when second-ranked Baylor heads to Oklahoma State, where the Bears will try to shut down the Cowboys’ Cade Cunningham. The likely NBA lottery pick is averaging 17.8 points while shooting better than 45% from the field. Elsewhere, ninth-ranked Kansas tries to get on track against Oklahoma, while No. 14 West Virginia visits Kansas State.
PITTSBURGH (AP) — The Pittsburgh Steelers have signed former Washington quarterback Dwayne Haskins to a futures contract, giving the 23-year-old a second chance after he flamed out in the nation’s capital in less than two seasons. 15th overall pick in the 2019 draft was ineffective on the field and a disruption off it, getting fined $40,000 and losing his captaincy for breaking COVID-19 rules by partying with several people without a mask. The signing comes as the Steelers await word on whether Ben Roethlisberger will return for an 18th season with the team.
MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — The Minnesota Vikings say offensive coordinator Gary Kubiak has retired after a 36-year career as an NFL player, coach and adviser. The Vikings ranked fourth in the league in total yards and tied for sixth in offensive touchdowns in their only season with Kubiak in charge of the offense. The decision was expected and will force head coach Mike Zimmer to hire a sixth offensive coordinator in six seasons.
TOP-25 COLLEGE BASKETBALL
Final Indiana 81 (4)Iowa 69
Final (24)UCLA 61 California 57
NATIONAL BASKETBALL ASSOCIATION
Final L.A. Lakers 113 Milwaukee 106
Final New York 119 Golden State 104
Final Utah 129 New Orleans 118