As we continue to catch up with Kansas City Chiefs chatting with national media during last week’s Super Bowl lead-up, running back Clyde Edwards-Helaire joined Pro Football Talk’s Mike Florio last Friday afternoon.
One of the first topics Florio presented Edwards-Helaire was the theory that perhaps the Chiefs play better when doubted — a notion that likely stems from the Chiefs’ eight-game winning streak following their 3-4 start during the 2021 regular season.
But Edwards-Helaire said that head coach Andy Reid ensures the team never gets too high or too low.
“The intensity and everything we did week in and week out never slowed down,” said the running back. “The way coach Reid runs his practices, it never felt like we were at the top of the food chain, and nobody else was going to mess with us. It always felt like we were going to chase something else that was greater, and honestly, it was the Super Bowl, and trying to conquer that was like the main goal, so having that focus kind of kept us pushing throughout that entire time.”
Later, Edwards-Helaire was asked about the Chiefs’ ability to often score at will. He explained that much of their success comes from not thinking — and leaning into the offense’s out-of-structure opportunities.
“I don’t know really the comparison, but it’s kind of like teaching a kid not to touch a hot skillet,” said Edwards-Helaire. “Those times, man we were on fire, but... sometimes it’s just not football-oriented. We just go out and we just having fun and before we know it, we blink our eye and we’re up 35 points because we just giving the ball to our playmakers, and it may have not been the play that was designed. It may have been something that was broken down and we figured out a a way to score, and then we’re up 35 points just because of the athletes and the guys on the field.”
That said, the Chiefs had their struggles in 2021, and the AFC title game they eventually lost in overtime became a tale of two halves. In those cases, Edwards-Helaire pointed to a loss of momentum.
“The times that we go out and score and then it’s so quick, and it’s happening so fast and we want to go back out and score and then we sit down for 10 minutes,” he said. “Another offense — they’re trying to put a drive together and the other coach is thinking, ‘We need to slow down this offense and get them off the field, and if we able to get them off the field, then they will slow down, and become — I guess — un-synced- up.’ And I don’t want to say it works because sometimes we come out and it’s just like nothing. We go back out and we still scoring points. It’s just one of those things we’re just trying to figure out and get over.”
One of the other subjects Edwards-Helaire touched upon was what may be holding offensive coordinator Eric Bieniemy back when it comes to not being able to land a head coaching role.
“We can’t sit in those meetings and really understand what goes on in coach’s interviews,” said Edwards-Helaire. “It’s just one of those things with jobs. It’s so many spots, so many open, available entries, but it’s so many guys and so many willing and — honestly — valid candidates that can fill those spots.”
In a way, the running back would be unhappy to lose Bieniemy, should he depart from the organization. Bieniemy was the Chiefs’ running backs coach before his promotion to offensive coordinator in 2018.
“Selfishly, would hate to see him leave — him being from New Orleans and kind of just having that home-grown feeling just when I came in the building, and the way that he teaches me and the things that we talk about, he just gets me over that hump each week.”