The Chiefs, in raising their record to 3-0, scored just one offensive touchdown for the second straight week. But they got four field goals from Ryan Succop, five turnovers from their opportunistic defense, including a 38-yard interception return for a touchdown by safety Eric Berry and 3 1/2 sacks from outside linebacker Justin Houston.
Reid always talks about being "all-in." His players were all-in for him in front of 69,144 who welcomed back Reid, as well as a national television audience.
"He needed to get this win," said running back Jamaal Charles, who came alive rushing for 73 of his 92 yards in the fourth quarter. "He might not tell anybody, but he had the biggest smile on his face."
You wouldn't know it by watching them against the Chiefs, but these Eagles are supposedly revolutionizing the NFL. They are fast and they are explosive and they are taking professional football by storm, long touchdown after long touchdown, except, well, one problem.
As good as the Eagles are on offense - and despite what you saw Thursday, they are really good - the Chiefs just proved themselves better on defense. This is supposed to be the NFL of offense, but Andy Reid's Chiefs are crashing the party - the league's first 3-0 team after a 26-16 win over the Eagles.
This is now a legitimate point of discussion: How many teams have a better defense than the Chiefs?
Andy Reid's Return To Philly Ends In Team Win from The Mothership
"Andy is a pro, man," Chiefs CB
Brandon Flowerssaid. "He was approaching this game really, like it was a regular game. I think it was the guys in the locker room that felt like we needed to go win, because we thought this was an extra-special game to Andy Reid. As players, we huddled up in the locker room and knew we had to go get the win for coach."
It's been a blast to watch the relationship between coach Reid and his players flourish, even since OTAs and it's those types of relationships that have the Chiefs doing whatever coach Reid asks them to do, and then some.
Game Recap: Chiefs vs Eagles from The Mothership
It was an absolutely beautiful evening that got even better, as soon as Kansas City Chiefs head coach Andy Reid led his new team onto Lincoln Financial Field, where he paced the sideline as the Eagles head coach for the last 14 years. The Philly home crowd gave coach Reid a standing ovation, as well a "Thank You" on the team's Jumbotron.
After the ovation, it was game time.
What does this win mean in the grand scheme of things?
It's impressive. Not because Philadelphia is some juggernaut, but because the Chiefs had every reason to lose Thursday. They were playing an innovative offense on the road with only three days to prepare. The fact they held the Eagles to 16 points is extremely impressive, and possibly a notice to the rest of the NFL that their defensive unit is legit.
Reid's Return Brings Mixed Emotions For Eagles Fans from KC Star
In the stands before the game, there were signs telling Reid to "Keep Chokin'," (emphasis on K and C inside an Arrowhead sketch) and someone carrying a tombstone with his name on it and somebody else with a sign that said, "Thanks Andy, The Time Was Yours."
All the contradicting emotions were summed up just before kickoff by one Eagles fan waiting near the tunnel for Reid to emerge.
"I've already cheered him when he came out before," he said, laughing. "Now it's time to boo him."
Chiefs-Eagles Game Report from KC Star
Reason to hope: The Chiefs made the playoffs in six of the seven previous times they started 3-0.
Reason to mope: The offense just isn't moving the ball. The Chiefs have scored one offensive touchdown in each of the last two weeks.
Donnie Avery picked a great time to have one of his best games as a professional.
As the Chiefs' running game was often bottled up and top receiver Dwayne Bowe was a largely a non-factor Thursday night at Philadelphia, it was Avery, a sixth-year pro from Houston, who repeatedly gave the Chiefs the boost they needed in a 26-16 win over the Eagles.
Four Downs With Chiefs WR Dwayne Bowe from The Mothership
Before kickoff, do you get butterflies?
"I wouldn't say butterflies, but anxious before pregame. After that first snap, I get back into vet mode and tunnel vision tunes in."
KCChiefs.com Video: Chiefs Postgame Press Conference
KCChiefs.com Video: Andy Reid Postgame Interview
KCChiefs.com Photo Gallery: Chiefs vs Eagles Photo Gallery
NFL.com Video: Week 3: Kansas City Chiefs vs Philadelphia Eagles Highlights
NFL.com Video: What Happened To The Philadelphia Eagles?
NFL.com Video: Chiefs Bar In Philadelphia
NFL.com Video: Dueling Dishes: Chiefs vs Eagles
Keeler: Say It Loud And Say It Proud -- This Chiefs Defense Is For Real from FS Kansas City
The game ball, of course, is going to go to that killer fourth-quarter drive, the one that allowed the Kansas City Chiefs to nibble away eight minutes of clock and little pieces of Chip Kelly's heart, all in one fell swoop. It was old-school. It was brutal. It was gorgeous.
But one of the other key moments of Andy Reid's 26-16 homecoming win over the Philadelphia Eagles -- one that'll probably get overlooked in the rush to find room on the 3-0 bandwagon -- came a whole lot earlier than that.
If you don't love this stinking defense, if you don't believe in this stinking defense, you should. And here's why:
Recap: Andy Reid's Return A Success As Chiefs Top Eagles 26-16 from The Associated Press via FS Kansas City
It was offensive master Reid's defense and special teams that set the tone and put his team ahead early, silencing the sea of green at the Linc. The Chiefs forced four first-half turnovers and Houston had three of their four sacks. He had another half-sack to start the second half, off a bad snap to Vick, and forced Vick to fumble with 1:34 remaining. Houston has 6 1/2 sacks in three games.
Flanny: When The Chiefs Needed Him Most, Alex Smith Delivered from FS Kansas City
The Chiefs' "championship drive" moment came in the fourth quarter with just over 11 minutes left while possessing a 23-16 lead. The Chiefs were backed up at their own 5.
On third and 10, quarterback Alex Smith -- and no way can I see Matt Cassel doing this -- stepped up and drilled a dart to Donnie Avery for 15 yards and a first down. That, my friends, was a championship throw.
If Smith doesn't make that throw, the Eagles get the ball back with all the momentum and a chance to tie.
Kansas City Chiefs Are 3-0 After D Smothers Eagles from NFL.com
Do you believe in the Kansas City Chiefs yet?
The team that went 2-14 in 2012 is now 3-0 in 2013 after an impressive 26-16 win over the Eagles in Andy Reid's Philadelphia homecoming.
This was a win earned in large part by the Chiefs' real-deal defense, which forced four of the Eagles' five turnovers on the night. Outside linebacker Justin Houston had a game J.J. Watt would be jealous of, finishing with 3.5 sacks, two fumble recoveries and three passes defensed.
Locker Room Buzz: Kansas City Chiefs from ESPN
The Chiefs traded unproductive starting wide receiver Jon Baldwin during the preseason, in part to make room in the starting lineup for Donnie Avery -- who had seven catches for 141 yards Thursday. Avery burned the Eagles several times by catching short crossing patterns and taking them for long gains.
Andy Reid Wins Return To Philadelphia As Kansas City Chiefs Beat Eagles from The NY Daily News
But it was Reid who gave his old team a lesson in basic football as the Chiefs went to 3-0, one more victory than they had al last year.
"Listen, you put it out of your mind the best way you can," Reid said afterward, getting as emotional as he ever allows himself to be. "But 14 years is 14 years, especially for a chubby old guy.
"I can tell you I enjoyed every minute here. I'm enjoying my time in Kansas City. It's all kind of settling in right now, I guess. I'm not really sure how I feel other than we won the game."
Chiefs vs Eagles Recap: Simply Put KC 3-0 from Warpaint Illustrated
On Thursday evening, the Chiefs defense stripped the Superman cape off Eagles Quarterback, Michael Vick. On the night, he completed just 13 of 30 passes, threw two interceptions, lost a fumble and was sacked five times.
It was a defensive performance that was nothing short of amazing considering the Chiefs offense was erratic for much of the game. In fact, outside of the final drive in the fourth quarter, which took eight minutes off the clock, the offense could not take advantage of incredible field position the defense gave them.
The Kansas City Chiefs are 3-0, a year removed from a season of 2-14. Blame Andy Reid. Thursday night was vintage Reid offense - the Reid option if you will. Safe passes on offense created big fields on defense, and the Chiefs even managed to bring out their coach's patented four-minute drill with two minutes to play in the first half.
And, it all worked. It worked because Reid is a pretty good coach. His play calling can be boring and downright brutal, but he gets the job done and done well.
Miscues From The Start Hamper Eagles' Chances from The News Journal
And the defense, which had saved the Eagles in the first half, couldn't hold the Chiefs in the fourth quarter as Kansas City beat the Eagles 26-16 on Thursday night.
The Eagles fell to 1-2 on the season, with a matchup looming Sept. 29 in Denver against Peyton Manning and the high-scoring Broncos. It was the Eagles' eighth straight home loss, dating back to Sept. 30, 2012, a 19-17 win over the Giants. Reid, meanwhile, saw his team improve to 3-0.
"I'm enjoying this," Reid said. "I am enjoying it. It's good to be back coaching a little more than I was doing before, on the field coaching with the offense than maybe what I was doing before.
"Sometimes change can be good. I enjoyed that [personnel] phase for the time that I did it. I'm enjoying this part, too. It's different. It's just a little bit different. I was a little more involved with the personnel there. It's good to have John here doing that. I have ultimate trust in him. Not that I didn't in Philadelphia. That's not what I'm saying, but I also trust that he has it under control."
The Chiefs re-signing Albert was a sign the organization believes Stephenson needs more seasoning even though he started eight games as a rookie.
For now, Stephenson is injury insurance. In the Chiefs' 17-16 win Sunday over Dallas, Stephenson played two series when Albert left with a shoulder injury.
Eagles Give Reid His Big Night In Philly As Chiefs Remain Undefeated from Sports Illustrated
It was all so familiar and recognizable on Thursday under the lights. With Reid and ex-Eagles quarterback Donovan McNabb in the house at Lincoln Financial Field -- No. 5, as he likes to call himself, was getting his No. 5 retired in a halftime ceremony -- there were the flood of Philly turnovers (five, all but one in the first half), costly and untimely breakdowns on defense (K.C.'s Donnie Avery and Jamaal Charles combined for 313 yards of offense), shoddy special teams play (a muffed punt by Damaris Johnson, and a missed field goal by Alex Henery), and the glaring lack of a home-field advantage (eighth straight loss at The Linc).
Add it all up, and the Eagles (1-2) did everything but roll out the Chiefs-colored red carpet for Reid, and leave a gift basket of snacks in his name on the Kansas City sideline.
Chiefs Defense Stymies Eagles' Attack from ESPN
The world will no doubt find fault with the fast-paced, no-huddle offense of Chip Kelly and the Philadelphia Eagles now that it has proven to have a few flaws.
A better idea might be to give credit to the Kansas City Chiefs, who left town after a 26-16 victory Thursday over the Eagles, for having one of the league's best defensive teams. Burdened with a sputtering offense that settled for field goals to end four drives, the Chiefs controlled the game with a defense that scored a touchdown on Eric Berry's 38-yard interception return, forced three other turnovers and sacked Philadelphia quarterback Michael Vick five times.
For Andy Reid, A Happy Homecoming from Philly.com
It was difficult to tell if Andy Reid did a nice job of putting his Kansas City Chiefs players in a better position to win his homecoming game at Lincoln Financial Field because the only thing Michael Vick and the Eagles did rapidly Thursday night was give the football away.
All that mattered in the end was that this night belonged to Reid and the Chiefs.
Kelly Gets First Taste Of Vick Turnovers from ESPN
Since January, when he was hired to replace Andy Reid as head coach of the Philadelphia Eagles, Kelly has dismissed the video record of quarterback Michael Vick's habit of throwing footballs to the other team.
Kelly didn't know Vick's reads on the 24 interceptions he threw in his previous 23 games. He didn't know whether a receiver ran the wrong route or an offensive lineman missed an assignment. So how could he know whether all those turnovers were Vick's fault?
Now Kelly knows.
Eric Berry Lives His Dream, Helps Chiefs Stay Undefeated, With Michael Vick Pick-6 from Sports Illustrated
The most impressive of those turnovers was the pick-six that Chiefs safety Eric Berry took from Michael Vick with 11:12 left in the first quarter. Vick was trying to hit tight end Brent Celek with a quick stick route, but linebacker Derrick Johnson read the play perfectly and tipped the pass to Berry, who ran 38 yards for the score.
And as it turns out, Berry's pick of Vick was a dream come true. When asked earlier this week on the NFL Network which quarterback he'd most like to intercept, Berry knew exactly who.
Sloppy Play Dooms Eagles In Reid's Return from Philly.com
TURNED OUT, feting Andy Reid and Donovan McNabb wasn't the really awkward, painful part of the night, after all. Reid and the now-3-0 Kansas City Chiefs visited the Eagles, and Michael Vick was so overcome by nostalgia, he performed like the guy who spent much of last season's stretch drive watching Nick Foles play quarterback.
Fresh Start Benefits Reid from Philly.com
A muffed fair catch by Damaris Johnson was recovered on the Eagles' 8-yard line, leading to a field goal. Michael Vick, whose ball-security issue was on the list of what went wrong in the waning days of Reid's tenure here, threw into double coverage on the Eagles' first series, which was returned for a touchdown and a quick 10-0 Chiefs lead. He threw another pick later on, and flirted with at least two others. A snap that bounced off the leg of a lineman created another turnover.
As if offering a tribute to Reid, Chip Kelly opted for an unorthodox-looking two-point conversion after the Eagles pulled to 10-6 later in the quarter. That point left them a touchdown behind when LeSean McCoy finished off a microwave scoring drive early in the fourth quarter to pull within 23-16.
Chiefs' Third Win Gets 49ers Closer To A Second from The San Francisco Chronicle
It appears the 49ers could net another second-round pick from the trade of Alex Smith to Kansas City.
The Chiefs' compensation: Respectability, at the very least.