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Sources: Patrick Mahomes could return to Chiefs in less than 3 weeks

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Could Mahomes' absence actually benefit the Chiefs? (1:36)

Tedy Bruschi, Rex Ryan and Randy Moss debate whether Patrick Mahomes missing games could be beneficial to Kansas City. (1:36)

Kansas City Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes, who suffered a dislocated kneecap Thursday night against Denver, could return in three weeks, if not sooner, league sources told ESPN.

The Chiefs are expected to exercise extreme caution with Mahomes, and the time off will allow him to rest his knee and high ankle sprain.

But the Chiefs escaped disaster when the MRI on Mahomes' knee came back as, according to an NFL source, a "best-case scenario" on Friday.

In the interim, the Chiefs will need someone to back up new starting quarterback Matt Moore. The most likely candidate, according to sources, is Kansas City's practice-squad quarterback Kyle Shurmur, the son of New York Giants head coach Pat Shurmur. The Chiefs also have Chad Henne on injured reserve, and he could be designated to return.

So while Mahomes is gone, the Chiefs have a couple of options to back up Moore starting with next Sunday's game against the Green Bay Packers.

Mahomes, the NFL's reigning MVP, was injured during a quarterback sneak on fourth down with just over nine minutes remaining in the first half Thursday night. As medical staff attended to him on the field, it appeared Mahomes' knee was straightened and popped back into place.