Denny Medley-USA TODAY Sports

Chiefs' Andy Reid Showing Willingness To Adapt


Kansas City Chiefs head coach Andy Reid keeps defying expectations.

After a fourteen years as the head coach of the Philadelphia Eagles, Reid’s tenure ended in failure. His last years with the Eagles were marred by losing seasons and despite a long history of success, Reid was never able to guide Philadelphia to a championship. The organization decided it was time for a change.

As the end of the 2012 season approached and Reid’s eventual fate was becoming more and more apparent, there were some in the media that suggested that Reid should probably take a year or two off from football. Fourteen years is a long time for an NFL coach to hold the same job and Reid had recently lost his son Garrett, who died at Eagles training camp last August from an accidental heroin overdose.

But Andy Reid had no intention in taking time off. Just days after being fired by the Eagles, Reid was being introduced as the next head coach of the Kansas City Chiefs.

Given Reid’s history and status as one of the most respected head coaches in the NFL, the media got right back to jumping to conclusions. It was written over and over that Reid would have full control in Kansas City and would have the final say in all personel decisions, even over the GM.

Yet everything we’ve seen from the Chiefs this offseason seems to indicated that GM John Dorsey and Reid really do have their own areas of power. After being hired, Reid was quoted on multiple occasions to the press,as saying that Dorsey had the final call on personel decisions.

Thus far, that appears to be the case.

Chiefs owner Clark Hunt seemed to have had his fill of power plays with former GM Scott Pioli. Pioli had total control over everything from the personel decisions right down to who picked up candy wrappers in the stairwell. Pioli’s power trip caused strife in the front office and on the field with former head coach Todd Haley.

Hunt may have allowed Reid a say in who the eventual GM of the Chiefs would be. Reid was the big fish and I am sure Hunt wanted the coach to have a GM that he was comfortable with. But just because Reid was afforded a say in putting together the team, doesn’t mean that he was granted all-encompassing power.

Reid seems to trust Dorsey and so far at least, there have been no reports of any disagreements between the two. Reid’s willingness to defy expectations and work with a GM instead of having the GM work for him, should only benefit the Chiefs as they build their team. Running a successful NFL franchise is a large and difficult task and not many men can do it on their own. Instead of being the football czar in KC, as he was originally projected to be by the media, it appears Reid is content with doing what he does best, which is coaching a football team.

Finally, Reid and Dorsey have decided to hire former Nevada head coach and creator of the Pistol offense, Chris Ault, as a consultant. While it isn’t clear exactly what Ault’s duties will be, there are reports that he will be helping install some form of the Pistol on offense, while also helping to coach the defense on stopping it.

This is yet another move that shows Reid’s ability to adapt to the ever-changing and evolving NFL. College offensive schemes are becoming more and more prevalent in the pros and if the Chiefs want to keep up with their competition, then they need to change with the times.

Kansas City has also hired former Minnesota Vikings head coach, Brad Childress, as the team’s “Spread Game Analyst.” While it is unclear exactly what Childress’ duties will be, it is apparent that the Chiefs are wisely bringing in talented and experienced consultants to help them survive and thrive in today’s NFL.

Instead of getting the hotshot, veteran head coach that was going to come in and call all the shots and put everyone in their place, the Chiefs appear to have gotten a thoughtful, forward thinking leader that has learned from both his success and his failures.

We’re way too early in the process to know if this new Chiefs regime will be successful. But the early returns seem positive.

If Reid and company can put it all together, there could be something very special happing in Kansas City.

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Tags: Andy Reid Kansas City Chiefs

  • steve james

    I think this looks to be the best chance the Chiefs have had to put together a Super Bowl winning team in my lifetime. How will the Belichick’s and Harbaugh’s hope to out think the brain trust that is shaping up? One great football mind against the Chiefs think tank, they don’t stand a chance! Go Chiefs!!

  • http://www.arrowheadaddict.com Patrick Allen

    It is other things too, like sticking with a 3-4. It just seems like Reid understands there are many different ways to win.

  • PunjabiPete

    I’m loving the vast majority of decisions being made, and even the ones I dislike (and that’s maybe too strong a word) are not so detrimental that I’m not going to sit back and see what happens. THIS would have been the time to ask Peyton Manning “what do you think you bring to our team” rather than asking him on the heels of a 4-12 season. Scott Pioli, take note.

  • NicholasAlanClayton

    One note: Reid’s final years in Philly were not “marred by losing seasons.” He only had three losing seasons (out of 13) with the Eagles — 1999 (his first year), 2005, and 2012. There were a couple of 8-8 outings in there, including 2011, but it was never as disastrous as the media made it out to be. Nothing like, say, the Chiefs of late.

    • berttheclock

      1999 was a rebuilding year. 2005 and 2012 were common in the number of injuries adversely affecting the team. Plus, in 2005, there were contract disputes with both Owens and Westbrook. During this long run, he lost his great defense due to the untimely death of his outstanding DC and he had to work with two different GMs and Directors of Player Personnel. Losing both Heckert and Grigson did hurt the quality of players in his last two years. What he learned from this, especially, in the 2005 and 2012 season, was the need for quality depth. With the addition of working with Dorsey, I don’t believe the Chiefs will have that depth problem in the future.

      BTW, in 2005, AR beat the Chiefs at Arrowhead 37-31. That was the game which turned on the 40 yard Pick Six after the Chiefs had taken a 17-0 lead. The INT was based on the DB jumping the pass to Kennison. The OC had gone to the well too many times on that play and refused to allow Green to check off the play.

      • Troy Utt

        Imagine that… Terrell Owens being the cause of inner turmoil on any team! Great Post Bert…

    • http://www.arrowheadaddict.com Patrick Allen

      Yeah but he went out losing. That was my point. Things got rough at the end and that is why he was canned. So rather than going out with a SB, he went out losing.

      • NicholasAlanClayton

        Yeah, and true dat. I just think that there is a misperception that the his last few years were a disaster. The wheels definitely fell off in 2012, but the three seasons leading into that, they went 11-5, 10-6 and 8-8 in what was the most competitive division in the NFC, if not the league, at the time. I understand that Philly fans are fickle beasts, but I think it’s unfair for the rest of the country to pick up on their angst. Really curious to see what Chip Kelly will do there. My guess is that he will either be extremely successful or will crash and burn like Steve Spurrier.

  • dakotachief

    When you look around the league at the “winners” you will see that it is all over the place from the standpoint of leadership styles. But what you will also notice is that the team with the highest coaching IQ tends to win the majority of the games. San fran, New Eng, indy with Dungy…very rarely is there a Haley, or a gunther thats a winner as a head coach. I like the collective IQ of the chiefs staff. I hope we have the player pieces to execute the plan

    • berttheclock

      However, notice the quality of General Managers, Trent Baalke and Bill Polian and now with Grigson or those who act as GMs notably Belichick in that equation. The top teams have great GMs who can adapt to changes in the league and can evaluate talent., including, the coaching staffs.

      • dakotachief

        Great point. I was looking merely from a coaching staff standpoint but you are right with regards to great front offices. They are the ones that can really make or break teams. You only have to look as far as our last administration

  • Danny W

    Hopefully Reid isn’t tired much like Crennel appeared to be last year. Just obviously didn’t have what it took anymore. I hope Reid comes in and blows people up.

  • berttheclock

    Having a high IQ may well help being a HC in the NFL, but, Marv Levy, who had one of the highest IQs, had far more success with Buffalo than in KC because he had far better talent to place upon the playing field.

  • mg2098

    John Dorsey also said it best though ” In today’s league you can’t win without the QB”. All the great coaches and players on a team will never change that. I just hope either Smith, Daniel or Bray will become the guy. One of these guys has to step up and take control. It’s nice to be able to list three possible QB’s. To me each one is really an unknown’ but all have a good enough skill set to succeed.

  • http://www.facebook.com/genemyuk Gene Yuknis

    after having todd haley totally take control of everything, this is such a great move by dorsey. bringing a bunch of guys with a lot of different backgrounds will only make this team much improved.

  • Stacy D. Smith

    If nothing else, this team will be very well coached and prepared.

  • KCPauly

    Nice read Pat,
    I am liking the way this organization is shaping up, 28+yrs. and now I can finally say I think we have the leadership to go all the way(no dis to Marty, he just could never win the big ones) I am getting very exited for the season to start…Go Chiefs!!!!!!!!!!!!!(as usual good posts Bert)

  • chiefdeorty

    I like what is going on in KC it is like a breath of fresh air over the way it has been since Dick Vermil retired. Of course time will tell but so far I like it and I am expecting great things happening in KC starting this year despite what some people are saying. I don’t see it as a reach to think we can win the west this year.The Chiefs have a fell of a hungry bear waking up from his winter nap. It will take some time for the timing to be there with the QB & receivers but I think they will be able to have a game plan to where they can call plays for the short term until they get that timing thing down and then it will be watch out time. I believe Nico Johnson will be a big factor from day one I just fell it. Alex Smith I think will be like having a Montana as QB, I don’t want it to sound like I am saying they equal talent wise but just in the offence Andy will install I think he will flourish like a tree planted by a river. Donkeys be where the Chiefs will be hard to beat, 10 & 6 is not out of the equation and we could win more than that. With the offensive line this year our running game will be unstopable Which is going to open up the passing game, there will be great defensive play in every part of it I am convinced although we will need to go relatively injury free. Who knows how high we could go in the playoffs, but I believe we will get there and we will win at least 1 game and maybe more. GO CHIEFS!

  • christian rajkovic

    I cant believe this story. Good luck Chiefs. Did any of the Chiefs fans see that Chip Kelly had to get rid of taco Tuesday and fast food Friday on the Eagles lunch days? Hahaha, good luck with Fast food Friday and Andy Reid hahaha. The RT you drafted number 1 overall is going to weigh 400 pounds by the time the season starts hahaha

    • Carlos Nevarez

      Hahahahahhahahaha.

      I win.

    • Jim Harper

      You need to crawl back under your rock.

  • Carlos Nevarez

    they seem to be very methodical. I feel like they’ve had a plan from the very beginning. If you look at all the players they picked up, it looks like they knew they were gonna hire Ault for a long time. The tight ends, the athletic pulling tackle, the FB. Even Alex Smith to an extent.

  • http://mlb.mlb.com/mlb/community/profile/index.jsp?ipid=14872822 upperturion

    Not an Eagles fan by any stretch … but wtf, Patrick!? “…marred by losing seasons.” What then are you ‘marred’ by, A.D.D.?? 4-12 in 2012; 8-8 in 2011; 10-6 in 2010; 11-5 in 2009; 9-6 in 2008. You do not need to stuff your story with misleading facts to make your point. Sheesh, voted Democrat AGAIN, did ya…………….not all of us are lie-lovers, dude.

    • http://www.arrowheadaddict.com Patrick Allen

      What I said is true. I didn’t say his last 5 years were marred by losing seasons. Just his last years. Just saying he went out losing. You are right, technically 8-8 isn’t a losing season but it isn’t a playoff record either.

      This comment wasn’t a knock on Reid, just a mention that his time in Philly came to an unfortunate conclusion.

      • http://mlb.mlb.com/mlb/community/profile/index.jsp?ipid=14872822 upperturion

        Nothing personal, Patrick … I’d take 8-8 right now in the Kingdom though………….