Kansas City Chiefs safety Tyrann Mathieu says he’s doing his best to study opposing players and stay positive in the face of being quarantined for the majority of his NFL offseason.
The members of the Kansas City Chiefs are facing the same circumstances as the rest of us these days—finding themselves homebound and figuring out how to stay atop the emotional, mental and physical hurdles imposed by a quarantine in the face of a spreading coronavirus.
Safety Tyrann Mathieu recently participated in a teleconference with Chiefs reporters and spoke about how he’s investing his time. He did say that his ability to study film hasn’t been deterred despite not being able to be at Arrowhead Stadium. Fortunately Mathieu and other players are able to keep up with coaches and watch film provided by the team and league to stay mentally focused and prepared when time allows.
“I’ve got my iPad, so I can watch the film, see the reps and try to visualize it,” said Mathieu. “And then try my best to make it work at home. Try my best to really follow the guidelines, y’know, and then mostly stay positive. I think that’s most important, just staying positive, staying in the right frame of mind. But I’ve been trying to get as much work in as I can with what I have.”
Specifically, Mathieu said he’s changed his focus of study. Instead of looking ahead to the schedule to try to get a read on opponents for the coming season, Mathieu says he’s trying to stay sharp personally by focusing on his own play and position.
“Most offseasons, I always study offenses,” he says. “I try to see what teams are going to be on the schedule that year and then try to get a jumpstart on them. But lately I’ve been studying other guys and I think that’s really starting to help my game, too—watching other guys play the positions I play, because I play a lot of different positions. At times, my technique can start to slip because I’m all over the place.
“I think it’s good to watch other guys play certain positions, but guys like Chris Harris, Richard Sherman, Patrick Peterson, Kevin Byard, Derwin James. I watch these guys film and we’re all different, but I try to take something from that. That’s where I’m at this offseason.”
Mathieu enjoyed a stellar first season in Kansas City as a free agent signing who helped turn around one of the league’s worst defensive units into a Super Bowl winning squad. Mathieu personally had 12 passes defended and 4 interceptions and was a versatile piece in the secondary who provided strong leadership on and off the field for a young Chiefs team. He was rewarded with a first-team All-Pro mention.