The Kansas City Chiefs beat the Arizona Cardinals 26-14 on Sunday, so Monday was the day for head coach Andy Reid’s day-after-the-game press briefing. Here are the key takeaways from his close encounter of the press kind:
Reid said that both the Chiefs — and this Monday’s opponent, the Los Angeles Rams — are looking forward to playing in Mexico City.
Reid got a big laugh from the press when a reporter with a pronounced Spanish accent asked him about playing in Mexico. “You’re not from Olathe,” Reid deadpanned.
“Listen, we’re looking forward to it,” he continued. “Great people there. The fanbase is phenomenal. I think if you asked both teams the same question, [they’d say] we’re fired up to have an opportunity to play there. [That’s] based around the people and the support that the people give us in the National Football League.”
Reid was asked if the Chiefs had considered practicing in a high-altitude environment, as the Rams are doing this week.
“We looked into all that,” Reid said. “We had plenty of time to look at that. After studying it, we just felt it was best to stay here. We’ll just go down there and play.”
Reid was also asked if he is concerned about the field conditions at Estadio Azteca, where the game will be played. Recent news reports have suggested that the field may not be in good condition, but Reid expressed confidence that the NFL is on top of the situation.
Reid said that while the Chiefs offensive line gave up five sacks to the Cardinals on Sunday, it was a good learning experience for the makeshift offensive line.
“That group hasn’t played a bunch together,” he said. “So they did a couple of things in there that’ll help us down the road here, and we can learn from. It wasn’t just a physical thing — in a couple of cases, it was — but it wasn’t just a physical thing. We seemed to kind of adjust to it in the second half and do a little bit better job. We’ve got to do better, obviously. And that’s what we’re always striving to do. I appreciate their effort, and their ability to make some changes and communicate — to work it out.”
That led to a question about the Rams defensive front.
“They’ve got a healthy load of good football players, and they’re well-coached,” Reid said. “We’re going to go back through — like we do each week — and stick to the process. It’ll be a day later than what we normally are for a Sunday game, but we’ll jump right back into making sure we get ourselves right — study them, and make sure we have that part down.”
One of the other matchups people will be watching on Monday is the one between Tyreek Hill and former Chief Marcus Peters.
“Marcus is a good player,” said Reid. “He was a Pro Bowl player when he was here. There’s a mutual respect there between the two because they’ve played against each other so much. I don’t know if there’s an advantage one way or the other. It’ll be fun to watch.”
Reid spoke about how Dee Ford has been playing since his return from the injury he suffered in 2017, and how it was nice to have Justin Houston back on the field on Sunday.
“You can see that he’s healthy and playing good football,” said Reid. “Having Justin [on the] opposite [side] just felt right for him. And then Breeland [Speaks] being able to come in and Tanoh [Kpassagnon] being able to come in — that’s a pretty good rotation. To watch Breeland grow over this last little bit when Justin was out — that’s a neat thing. Dee’s healthy, and feels good about the things that he’s doing. He’s doing a good job setting the edge, too, which kind of gets overlooked with his pass rush. He’s playing good football right now.”
Reid also spoke about another player returning from an injury last season: Spencer Ware, who scored a touchdown on Sunday.
“There was a question whether he’d be able to come back from that injury,” said Reid. “Pretty tough one to come back from. But you know the kid, and you go, ‘Well, if anybody can do it, he can do this.’ He bore down and got after it. Rick [Burkholder] and the trainers worked with him. He was here every day — doing his thing and being diligent like that — so when he goes out and plays, and you’re like, ‘Whoa!’ And he’ll score a touchdown”
Other notes from Monday’s press appearance
Reid said that there were no injuries to report after Sunday’s game. He was hopeful that the extra day off would help hobbled players get healed in time for Monday’s game, and said that Sammy Watkins and Anthony Hitchens might be ready to go by then. Watkins was inactive on Sunday with a foot injury, but Hitchens dressed for the game. Reid said that Hitchens had been active on Sunday only in case he was needed.
Reid was asked if, at this point of the season, he’d consider Patrick Mahomes to be the league MVP. Reid demurred, saying he wasn’t very good at “all that stuff.” Reid said he understood why reporters had to ask him the question, but he was going to be “a little water around the boulder” about it.