It was syllabus week across the Kansas City area and country this week, and like those students who are acclimating to their new campuses, the Kansas City Chiefs most recent acquisition, Orlando Scandrick, is very much in the same boat.
“This is like the first day of school every day for me,” Scandrick said after his first practice Tuesday. “I spent 10 years in one locker room and kind of knew [my way around], so now I’m just trying to learn how they do things around here so that I can fit in.”
The Chiefs wasted little time getting cornerback Orlando Scandrick involved at practice today. Scandrick was the third corner, joining Kendall Fuller and David Amerson when the Chiefs went to nickel. Starting corner Steven Nelson did not practice because of a concussion.— Adam Teicher (@adamteicher) August 21, 2018
Despite the quick turnaround giving Scandrick little time to get acquainted, the 31-year-old veteran is happy about being with the Chiefs — a team that “just felt like family” to him.
And to no surprise — especially given the Chiefs’ early defensive injuries — head coach Andy Reid is just as excited, commenting that it’s good to have a player he’s watched develop and grow for a decade now wearing the red and gold.
“I talked to him before our last game about how fast those years have gone by. He can come in and help us with his experience,” Reid said. “He had a nice year last year and he can come in and help us, that’s what he’s attempting to do out here. He’s just starting off and learning everything thrown at him. He’s a really smart kid. If you talk to all of his former coaches they’ll tell you the same thing. He’s very intelligent.”
But while it may be a new team and a new coach for Scandrick, something that provides a sense of familiarity is getting to play alongside former Dallas Cowboys teammate (2014-17) Anthony Hitchens once again.
“We texted back and forth before I visited here,” Scandrick said. “Hitch is a great player and I feel like the roles are reversed now, he was the new guy in the locker room (with the Dallas Cowboys in 2014) and I helped him get around, and now it’s reversed where he’s helping me find my way.”
With the help of Hitchens, coaches and his teammates, Scandrick will look to create his own legacy in the number 22 jersey for the Chiefs, a number formerly donned by 2015 defensive player of the year Marcus Peters. For the record, Scandrick said he didn’t choose the number—one also worn by the recently departed Robert Golden—it was just given to him.
As far as figuring out where he fits in with this new team, Scandrick’s mindset is simple: he just wants to be fully prepared to take the field this fall.
“After being in the league for 10 years, there is only so many coverages that a team can run,” Scandrick said. “There’s only so many different philosophies, but I’m just trying to learn the terminology. Put myself, whether I was a nickel or I was a corner, in that position and mentally make those calls, so when I do get an opportunity to get out there, that I can be ready.”