The Kansas City Chiefs will take the field on Sunday to face off with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in Super Bowl LV. However, the Chiefs won’t just be competing to become the NFL’s champion this season, they will be looking to join a very elite class of teams that have repeated as champions and earned a special place in NFL history. While I don’t want to jinx anything, I believe that the Chiefs will win this weekend for the same reason I believe they won last season, which is the same reason I believe they will have a great chance to win again next season.
Actually, it’s not really just one reason; it’s four. Just last week I wrote up a list of the top ten reasons the Chiefs made it back to the Super Bowl this season. After writing it, I couldn’t stop thinking about the top four spots on that list: Patrick Mahomes, Andy Reid, Tyreek Hill, and Travis Kelce. While a winning football team takes a complete roster, a great coaching staff, and a strong front office, not all things are created equal and some things just matter more than otheres.
Before I go any further with this point, let me be clear. I understand that the Chiefs couldn’t make it to or win a Super Bowl without a defense, or an offensive line, or some contribution from the running game and special teams. It all matters, but what makes theChiefs truly special are those four men and how they have come together to make the Chiefs offense one of the most unstoppable forces that I have seen in my time as a NFL fan. I hope that that on Sunday the injury-depleted offensive line can hold up, and I believe that K.C.’s defense will make some big plays, but ultimately I’m picking the Chiefs to win the Super Bowl again because of those four figures.
You often hear naysayers use Kansas City’s four horsemen against each other when arguing their greatness.
“Mahomes is only this great because he has Reid’s offense and Hill and Kelce to throw to.”
“Reid has only gotten over the hump because of Mahomes.”
“Hill (or Kelce) are only putting up these numbers because of Reid and Mahomes and because the other one is drawing coverage away.”
The Chiefs dynasty-in-the-making is centered on four key figures.
It’s meant to downgrade their accomplishments, but I really think it actually shines a light on why this team is so great. They have four truly special pieces on their offense. The person designing it is a Hall of Fame coach and revolutionary offensive mind. The quarterback running the offense may just be the most dynamic talent the league has ever seen at the position. The number one receiver has speed and big-play ability that no other player in the NFL can match. The tight end has a combination of size and receiving skills that makes him a matchup nightmare.
Of course, they make each other better, but that’s not a put down. We as fans need to not see that concept as a way of discrediting them as individuals, but as a reason to believe in this offense as truly great and the very center of what may just turn out to be the NFL’s next dynasty. I know some won’t want to talk about it until after the Chiefs actually beat the Buccaneers and complete operation “Run It Back”. While I can admit that a loss would be hard to swallow, it really wouldn’t change my thoughts on this topic.
Regardless of the outcome of this game I will continue to believe that these four men are such an incredible advantage for this team that they will continue to compete for Super Bowl wins, year in and year out, as long as the four of them are together and still producing at this level. I think they are all four Hall of Fame caliber talents on their own, and 20 years from now, we will look back and marvel at how lucky we were to have all four together at once on the same team.
Just in case you aren’t sure about their individual greatness, here are just a few highlights.
Andy Reid is 6th all time in wins by an NFL head coach. He’s poised to pass Curly Lambeau next season to move into fifth place all time, and he has a really strong chance to pass Tom Landry for fourth place if he coaches three more seasons. He also currently ranks 23rd all time in head coach winning percentage. If you only count coaches with at least 100 career games coached it pushes Reid up to 15th on that list. Which means his legacy isn’t longevity but consistent success as well. He has 11 career division titles between the Philadelphia Eagles and the Chiefs, and he’s the only head coach in NFL history to have his team host three straight conference championship games—something he did with both the Eagles and the Chiefs.
Travis Kelce is quickly becoming the most prolific tight end in NFL history. He is already 10th all time in the NFL in receiving yards by a tight end at the age of 31 and another 1,000 yard season next year could potentially jump him as high as 5th on that list. Not only is Kelce the only tight end in NFL history to put up five straight 1,000 yard seasons, but he’s the only tight end to put up five 1,000 yard seasons at all. To put just how amazing that is into perspective, only seven other tight ends in NFL history have more than two 1,000 yard seasons total in their careers.
Tyreek Hill is a player who is hard to describe in words. You really just have to see him to understand how special he is. I can’t remember any other offensive skill player that ran by other world-class athletes with the ease of Hill. So yes, Hill was 8th in the NFL in receiving yards this season and second in receiving touchdowns, but that doesn’t even do his skill set justice. Instead of trying to write more to try and describe it, I encourage you to watch the mic’d up video from NFL Films from the conference championship games. There are multiple Buffalo Bills players caught commenting about how Hill’s speed is just different. They don’t even sound mad, just impressed. It’s worth a watch if you haven’t seen it.
Then there’s Patrick Mahomes. What more can really be said at this point? You’ve seen the stats. He’s already piling up numbers. The highlight reel plays have almost become so frequent that we aren’t even surprised by them anymore. The success he’s had is unmatched by anyone this early in their career. It seems like he’s toppling a new record every week as “youngest player to do this” or “best stats by a quarterback in his first [x amount of games].” He’s simply off to the best start of any quarterback in NFL history. Period.
So what has putting these four talents together led to?
Over the past three seasons, the Chiefs are 40-8 with Reid as the coach and Mahomes, Hill, and Kelce all starting. They are averaging 32.3 points per game in those games. They’ve already won one Super Bowl, are hopefully about to win another, and were a Dee Ford offsides call away from appearing in a third. Over the past two seasons, the win/loss numbers are even more impressive. In fact, if the Chiefs win on Sunday, it will make them 28-3 with two Super Bowl wins over the past two seasons when all four men are on the field. That’s insane by any standard in any era.
These four are all under contract for the next two seasons (Hill’s current deal runs out after the 2022 season), so there is no reason to believe this run will come to an end any time soon. Yes, Brett Veach will still need to fill in talent around them so that they can continue to shine, but make no mistake, it is the combination of these four men on offense that makes this Chiefs team so special. They were the essential core of the Super Bowl winning team last year. They are the central core of the team that I hope will win it all again on Sunday. They will continue to be the core for at least the next couple of years to come.
Here’s hoping that makes them the core of the NFL’s next true dynasty.