Sharp was born in Winnipeg, Manitoba. He began his hockey career in Thunder Bay, Ontario, playing first for the Thunder Bay Kings program then for the former Thunder Bay Flyers of the United States Hockey League (USHL). From there he continued his hockey career in the college ranks with the University of Vermont, before the Philadelphia Flyers selected him 95th overall (3rd round) in the 2001 NHL Entry Draft.
After completing two years with Vermont, Sharp made his NHL debut in 2003–04, splitting the season between the Flyers and their American Hockey League (AHL) affiliate, the Philadelphia Phantoms, recording 7 points (5 goals, 2 assists) in 41 regular season games with the Flyers, and 29 points (15 goals, 14 assists) in 35 games for the Phantoms. Due to the 2004–05 NHL lockout, Sharp spent the entire following season in the AHL with the Phantoms, registering 23 goals and 29 assists (52 points) in 75 regular-season games and 8 goals and 13 assists (21 points) in 21 playoff games en route to a Calder Cup championship.
Midway through the 2005–06 season, Sharp was traded by the Flyers, along with Éric Meloche, to the Chicago Blackhawks on December 5, 2005, for Matt Ellison and a 3rd-round pick in the 2006 NHL Entry Draft. He finished the campaign with a combined 31 points between the two teams. Sharp emerged with the Blackhawks in 2007–08, recording career-highs of 36 goals, 26 assists and 62 points. He led the Blackhawks in power play goals (9), shorthanded goals (7), and game-winning goals (7). Near the half-way mark for the season, on January 17, 2008, the Blackhawks signed Sharp to a four-year contract extension through the 2011–12 season.
At the start of the 2008–09 season, on October 8, 2008, Sharp was named an alternate captain for the Blackhawks, along with Duncan Keith. Despite being limited by injuries, Sharp helped the Blackhawks form a highly offensive and young core led by second-year forwards Jonathan Toews, Patrick Kane and newly-acquired defenceman Brian Campbell. He finished the campaign with 44 points in 61 games. He added 11 points in the post-season as the Blackhawks were eliminated in the Western Conference Finals by the Detroit Red Wings.
On January 30, 2011, Patrick Sharp won the 2011 NHL All-Star Game MVP Award, getting one goal and two assists.
On August 3, 2011, Sharp signed a 5-year contract extension with the Blackhawks worth $29.5 million over 5 years. The contract will come into effect during the 2012–13 NHL season and will carry an annual salary cap hit of $5.9 million.
On September 12, 2011, Sharp underwent an emergency appendectomy after experiencing abdominal discomfort. Team physician Dr. Michael Terry anticipated that Sharp would have a full recovery in about 3-4 weeks.
Patrick was born in Winnipeg, Manitoba to Ian and Ruth Ann Sharp. He has an older brother, Chris, who currently lives in Calgary. Patrick moved to Calgary as a child and then moved to Thunder Bay in 1990 (at 9 years old). Patrick lived in Thunder Bay for the rest of his childhood. Patrick’s parents remain in Thunder Bay and live on Lake Superior.
Patrick was married in July 2010  to his longtime girlfriend Abby, whom he met while attending college in Vermont. Their wedding was held in Watch Hill, Rhode Island. The two are expecting their first child, a girl, in December 2011.
In early 2011, Sharp was featured on the cover of Chicago magazine in its “50 Most Beautiful Chicagoans” story.