Andy Reid loves to throw the ball, but has rarely relied on a deep passing game. Mahomes and company will likely see a return to Reid’s old ways.
The K.C. Chiefs have revolutionized offensive play in the National Football League. With weapons like Travis Kelce, Tyreek Hill, and Mecole Hardman, the Chiefs have made a deeper emphasis on pushing the ball down the field through the air than seemingly any team in history. With a cannon for an arm, Patrick Mahomes is perfect for this style of play. Although the Chiefs had great moments last season on offense, they also had moments in which they looked disjointed and out of sync.
Signs now point to Andy Reid being more willing to go back to his old ways. While you won’t find the gimmicky, manufactured offense that existed in the Alex Smith regime, you will likely see more pieces of it than in previous years. What makes one come to this conclusion? Personnel. The Chiefs are building an old-fashioned Andy Reid style offense. Here are a few of the pieces of the offense that indicate a swing back to the early days of Coach Reid.
1. Orlando Brown Jr.
Perhaps the Chiefs were just looking for the best available offensive lineman. Or perhaps the vast difference in play style between Brown and Eric Fisher indicates something deeper. At first glance, the acquisition of Brown seems like an attempt to replace an injured player with a solid piece of the offensive line. In the NFL, however, every addition is carefully considered about its ramifications for years to come.
Brown and Fisher represent two completely different ends of the offensive tackle spectrum. Fisher has quick feet, stays in front of defenders, and figuratively dies a slow death to allow the quarterback time to throw the ball. Fisher struggled with powerful EDGE players, such as the Bosa brothers and Myles Garrett, but did well against quicker guys. Now, the Chiefs have a different style of player in Orlando Brown Jr.
Brown has very long arms and power in his jab. While he is not particularly quick, the tape would suggest that if he gets his hands on you, it will be exceedingly difficult for you to break loose. While he may have trouble with quicker guys at times, he will likely be able to completely shut down linebackers at the second level and stout defensive ends. This style of player may not be well suited for deep drops that Mahomes is accustomed to taking, but will be good for another staple in an Andy Reid offense.
Reid is known as a brilliant NFL mind. He watches tape from decades ago to dream up new offensive looks and schemes. One aspect that he seemed to use less of last year due to offensive line uncertainty: screens. Whether it be screens to a tight end, full back, wide receiver, or running back, Andy Reid has historically loved using the screen game to get playmakers in space. The effective downhill style of blocking that Brown provides will allow the Chiefs to use screens more effectively in 2021.