Welcome to another edition of Coordinator Talk.
This week we feature the Kansas City Chiefs coordinators. Coming off a win against the Washington Redskins, the Chiefs coordinators spoke to the media about everything ranging from the dynamic of have multiple return guys, to the Chiefs’ pass-rush returning on a snowy day.
Chiefs Special Teams Coordinator Dave Toub
Q: What’s the advantage of having multiple kickoff return guys?
“Depth is number one, obviously. It creates problems for the other team. You have different styles. Quintin (Demps) likes to press the edges and look for the cut backs, whereas Knile (Davis), he can probably do that too, but he can also hit it right up the field north and south. They create problems for another team because of the different styles that they have.”
Q: Did you envision this amount of success by Week 14?
“We’ve developed probably a little faster than you would have imagined. A lot has to do with Andy Reid and how he established how important special teams were in practice and how it can impact the game. They bought in at training camp. Now it has kind of snowballed for us.”
Q: Does it make it harder for teams to cover when you have different guys with different styles?
“It’s kind of a cat and mouse game, a little chess game and then we throw our guys out there late and they have a different kind of scheme for each guy. Those are all things that work to our advantage.”
Chiefs Offensive Coordinator Doug Pederson
Q: Why was the offense so efficient in bad conditions in Washington last Sunday?
“We always say you never let weather be a factor, win or lose. Our guys really handled the elements well. I think our guys and their week of preparation put them in the best possible situation on game day. They overcame the elements and didn’t let it bother them.”
Q: In recent weeks, is it dramatic how much your offensive line has improved?
“They’ve steadily improved from Week One to where we are today. Is it dramatic or drastic? There have been subtle changes throughout the year. Our guys have overcome some adversity (with) injury throughout the year and moving some guys around. They’ve hung together; they’ve hung tough with that. You always say you’re as good as your offensive line. In the last month of the season, they’ve played really well.”
Q: What are some of the good things Rodney Hudson has given you at center?
“He’s a rock in there. He has been a solid leader. He’s embraced the position, he’s controlling the line of scrimmage, he’s directing the traffic up front. He’s done a great job with that. He’s leading those guys – the center is the nucleus of the offense, that’s where it starts and he’s brought some stability there.”
Q: Would you call Geoff Schwartz’s improvement from the beginning of the year dramatic?
“He has really been the bright spot here lately. He has really done a nice job in there.”
Q: How much do you pay attention to the best combination of linemen, or do you just play the best guard or tackle or are there two guys who work together better?
“It comes down to the best five. There is that communication where your left tackle and left guard, that combination, if those two guys work well together, then let’s keep those guys together. It could be a right tackle, right guard, you have a veteran guy and a rookie right tackle, so there is some consistency there to keep those two guys together. Whether that be Asamoah in there or Geoff Schwartz in there communicating with Fish. You like those types of situations; again, that goes to the growth of Eric Fisher. Having that veteran guy next to you gives you the confidence to communicate. Starting with Rodney to communicate down the line and get the job done.”
Chiefs Defensive Coordinator Bob Sutton
Q: As far as the pass rush this past week, was it just a matter of time before it came back?
“Pass rush is, I use the word click. To click away a lot of times and whether it’s to get off a little better or make a better move or cover a little longer, the quarterback holds the ball longer for whatever reason whether it’s the skies, he’s slowing his progression, whatever. Those are the things that change pass rush. Our energy in rushing hasn’t changed in rushing over these last three or four weeks when we weren’t getting a lot of sacks. We were still rushing hard, we were still pressuring. Then, sometimes it’s just, like I said, just a click away and you make that play”
Q: As far as their running back situation (Oakland Raiders), do you prepare for the best that they have and then kind of go down the line from there?
“They really haven’t changed what they do, no matter who has been in. They’ve played really four different running backs and the plays haven’t changed. We really won’t change. We try to make our players aware of who is in the game, what’s his style as a runner, is he a one-cut downhill runner, is he a bounce-out or a cutback runner? Those are the important things that you want to know when the guys are in there. (Darren) McFadden, we know, has great speed, so you have to edge him and keep him in the box or he can take it the distance. I think (Rashad) Jennings has been playing really well for them, before the concussion obviously. He went in there and I think did a really outstanding job for them. (He is) very consistent, moves the pile, ran hard and has been a really good find for them, I think.”