The Kansas City Chiefs sent a very loud and direct message to the Cincinnati Bengals on Wednesday.

Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes, who is dealing with a high ankle sprain that he suffered last week against the Jacksonville Jaguars, met with reporters on Wednesday ahead of Sunday’s AFC Championship showdown with the Bengals.

When Mahomes was done talking with reporters, he walked off the podium in full view without a walking boot and without a noticeable limp.

Check it out:

That was absolutely done purpose to send a message to the Bengals.

The message?

Game on.

Call it gamesmanship, call it confidence. Whatever you want to call it, the Chiefs are ready to go and they’re not going to be using Mahomes’ ankle as an excuse.

In a way, I think this works to the Bengals’ advantage. We obviously don’t know how Mahomes will perform once he’s on the field. But after seeing him without a walking boot and without a limp, I think it’s safe for Cincinnati to gameplan as normal instead of trying to get cute on defense.

Maybe the Chiefs should’ve put Mahomes in a walking boot and provided some theater on Wednesday. That certainly would’ve dominated the afternoon talk shows. And it might have given them an advantage over Cincy.

Either way, it’s going to be a wild scene on Sunday. And it looks like Mahomes might look more like himself than we were expecting.

Featured image via Kareem Elgazzar-USA TODAY Sports

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