But that theory, as valid as it is, failed to take into account one other factor.
Houston Texans quarterback Deshaun Watson was in Mahomes' draft class and also is eligible to land his first NFL contract extension this offseason. Watson already has stated his case for a lucrative deal with repeated superb play that included a victory in last Saturday's wild-card round over the Buffalo Bills.
But if Watson can lead the Texans to a road upset in Kansas City against Mahomes and the Chiefs, and drive Houston even further into the postseason, his price might go up that much more.
Either way, Mahomes and Watson are in line for contract extensions this offseason that could reset the quarterback position and how NFL deals are done.
Watson, 24, passed for 3,852 yards and 26 touchdowns in 15 games this season and rushed for 413 yards and seven touchdowns. The Texans selected Watson with the No. 12 pick in the 2017 draft, two picks after the Chiefs took Mahomes at No. 10.