Speaking with the media for the final time this week on Thursday morning, head coach Andy Reid explained that Chiefs players were looking forward to getting through the day’s practice — because it will be their last difficult session of the year.
“I think the guys, they’ll look forward to getting [Thursday],” said Reid. “[Thursday’s] a little bit harder practice and this is normally how it works during the season. They get through Thursday and they really start focusing in, and you go, ‘Doggone, we’re there.’ You can start getting really excited. Once they get through [Thursday], I’m sure that will take place.”
Why Thursday is difficult to get through
Reid talked about how difficult a practice Thursday in Arizona would be several times during the press conference.
“You get to [Thursday], and you’ve got the hardest practice of the week. I’m not telling you it’s two-a-days — or anything like that, like training camp — but they have a good practice ahead of them. I know they look forward [to] getting through that, and then I think they start picking things up.”
Staring right tackle Andrew Wylie detailed why Reid described Thursday’s workout as such.
“We get a lot of work in [Thursday],” said Wylie. “We cover everything. There’s normal team periods. There’s short-yardage, goal line, backed up, four-minute. We have a whole lot of scenarios [Thursday]. [Thursday’s] the day we get most of our plays in. So yeah, looking forward to [Thursday], getting out here in the Arizona heat, getting after it a little bit.”
Reid is a man who believes in routine, so the Chiefs try to keep the atmosphere similar to how it might be in Kansas City — even as they practice at Arizona State University.
“Yeah, it hasn’t changed too much, honestly,” added Wylie. “They have stuck to the routine. The biggest challenge is busing to practice and working out time to bus back and still make meeting times manageable. But it’s very similar to the schedule we have back home — and I have no complaints.”
The practice is equally as tough on defense.
“These (Thursday) practices man, you get a little bit of everything,” said linebacker Nick Bolton. “Different situational ball. You also have to push yourself. This is one of the longer practices of the week, so you want to push yourself, try to push yourself in those situations you’ll be at in the game and what it would be like making a play. It’s a little extra strain, and just detail-wise, you want to clean it up.
“This one and next one (on Friday) are the last ones you get. Attention to detail is ramped up — the speed and concentration, as well.”
As is well known, the Super Bowl includes a bye week in Kansas City, which the Chiefs use to install their game plan. So this will be the second time going through the rigorous session.
“It’s been two weeks,” concluded Reid. “They want to play.”