On Sunday, the Kansas City Chiefs and Carolina Panthers will do battle at Bank of America Stadium, kicking off the second of four preseason games for each team. Kansas City comes into the contest after beating the Cincinnati Bengals 41-39 last Thursday, while Carolina is looking for its first win.
Despite being in separate conferences, the two teams have quite a few connections. Carolina head coach Ron Rivera coached as an assistant under Andy Reid in Philadelphia from 1999-2003, working as a linebackers coach. Rivera also served as the Chicago Bears defensive coordinator while Dave Toub ran special teams, giving the staffs plenty of familiarity. Rivera was in his first gig as a quality control coach in Chicago during the mid-90's while Chiefs offensive line coach and former lineman Andy Heck was one of his pupils.
Carolina's defensive coordinator Sean McDermott has a very long history with Reid, beginning his career under Reid in Philadelphia where he worked from 1999-2010, moving up the ranks.
Defensive lineman Jaye Howard is hoping for a little reunion this weekend. Howard played at the University of Florida with Cam Newton before Newton went onto stardom at Auburn. Frankie Hammond Jr. was also part of that group. Ron Parker might also have added motivation, having spent eight weeks with the Panthers in 2012 on the practice squad.
Another odd factoid is Carolina quarterbacks coach Ken Dorsey played with Alex Smith in San Francisco, backing up the youngster in 2004-05.
There's also this Chiefs-Panthers connection: