NFL

The Rest of the NFL Can’t Keep up With Andy Reid

Since he took over as the Eagles’ head coach in 1999, Andy Reid has become one of the best coaches in the NFL in the 21st century. His teams have averaged almost 10 wins per season, and he finally reached the top of the hill, leading the Kansas City Chiefs to a Super Bowl championship — Reid’s first as a head coach — last season. And, at 62 years old, he doesn’t show any signs of slowing down.

He is still at the top of the game and leading the team with perhaps the best quarterback in the league. As if having Patrick Mahomes isn’t enough of an advantage, Reid’s superb play calling puts him ahead of most coaches.

Andy Reid’s professional coaching career

After spending a decade on college football coaching staffs, Reid made the jump to the NFL in 1992, becoming an assistant offensive line coach with the Packers, staying with the team until leaving to take the top job with the Philadelphia Eagles in 1999.

He spent 14 seasons in Philadelphia, going 130-93-1 and leading the team to nine playoff appearances, including a Super Bowl appearance. Following the 2012 season, Reid headed west to become the Chiefs’ head coach, and in his eighth season there, is 81-35-0, including the franchise’s first Super Bowl championship in 50 years.

Andy Reid’s success continues in 2020

Andy Reid stands on the sidelines during a Chiefs game
Andy Reid coaching the Kansas City Chiefs | Jamie Squire/Getty Images

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Reid has the Chiefs undefeated through the first quarter of this season — and his play calling has a lot to do with that. That was obvious when the Chiefs rolled over the Ravens in what was supposed to be a competitive game in Week 3.

Sports Illustrated details some of the moves that Reid made that worked. He had a play in the game where he had four wide receivers stacked on top of one another on one side of the formation — the first time since a play was recorded in the five-year history of the NFL’s Next Gen Stats. Reid had the Chiefs’ backfield in motion virtually the whole game, and he unpacked the defense for Mahomes before seemingly every snap.

The Chiefs ended up winning the game, 34-20, but it wasn’t really as close as the final score indicates; Kansas City was up 27-10 at halftime. The broadcast crew referred to the Chiefs’ scoring as “at-will,” and it came against one of the best defenses in the league.

Prior to the Chiefs’ game, the Ravens had given up the fewest points in the league and forced the most turnovers.

A combination of talent and smarts

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Andy Reid is a football lifer — as evidenced by the viral video of 13-year-old Reid towering over his competitors in a 1971 punt, pass, and kick competition. And he has forgotten more about the sport than most people will ever know, but knowledge alone doesn’t equal success in the NFL.

Talent plays a big part in it as well, and the Chiefs have a lot of talent on their roster. That list is led by Mahomes, who already has an NFL MVP and a Super Bowl MVP to his name as a 25-year-old. This season, Mahomes has 11 touchdown passes and just one interception through his first four games.

Part of that is because he is able to throw to one of the top receivers in the league, Tyreek Hill. He is on pace to surpass 1,000 receiving yards this season for the third time in his career. Another strong pass-catcher in the receiving corps is TE Travis Kelce, who is one of the best players at his position, who is looking for his fifth-straight 1,000-yard season.

When you combine that on-field talent with Reid’s football acumen, you have a seemingly unstoppable offense.

All stats courtesy of Pro Football Reference