‘Pat No Matter What’ – The Athletic

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On the morning of the 2017 NFL Draft, before Brett Veach rushed to the office, his wife Alison handed him a little note, a message from their daughter, Ella, who was 6 and still working on her calligraphy. The card contained only four words. He was also referring to a three-year-old sports movie with sentimental value. It became, accidentally or not, a mission statement for the Kansas City Chiefs, a philosophy that would define the front office of an eternal Super Bowl contender and one day find itself hanging near Veach’s desk.

On a small slip of paper, in the sloppy handwriting of a 6-year-old child, was the following request:

Pat no matter what.

Ella Veach, of course, had never seen the movie “Draft Day,” in which Kevin Costner plays a Browns executive who falls in love with an Ohio State pass rusher and scribbles a reminder on a post-it note. (“Vontae Mack no matter what.”) She also didn’t understand her father’s fascination with “Pat,” as in Patrick Mahomes, the big-armed Texas Tech quarterback (although his wife, the source of the map, did). More than a year earlier, on a quiet day in Kansas City, Veach was in the office one weekend working on tape on a Texas Tech lineman when he came across the craziest quarterback he has ever seen. It was on that day that he told Andy Reid he had found the Chiefs’ next QB.

A man can’t make a draft pick exist, especially the co-director of player personnel; it takes


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