On Friday, Fox Sports NFL’s Twitter account posted a graphic with an impressive stat about the Kansas City Chiefs.
The @Chiefs lead the way in seasons with double digit wins— FOX Sports: NFL (@NFLonFOX) March 10, 2023
h/t @SharpFootball pic.twitter.com/qVwcb45QhB
Since the folks at Fox had credited Warren Sharp, I decided to find out what Sharp had said to inspire them.
seasons with double digit wins since 2018:— Warren Sharp (@SharpFootball) March 8, 2023
5 - KC
4 - BAL, BUF
3 - SF, DAL, GB, LAR, NE, NO, SEA
2 - TB, TEN, MIN, LAC, IND, CIN, HOU
1 - ARI, LV, PHI, PIT, MIA, CLE, CHI
0 - DET, NYG, NYJ, JAX, WAS, DEN, ATL, CAR
In a reply to the tweet, Sharp revealed his thinking for the stat — which had more to do with Lamar Jackson than it did with the Chiefs.
the 5 teams fastest to be "out" on Lamar Jackson all have a "0" or "1" next to their name— Warren Sharp (@SharpFootball) March 8, 2023
But what really caught my eye was something that was first pointed out in another reply to Sharp’s original tweet — this one from a Chiefs fan.
*KC-9 out of the past 10 seasons— Saul (@TheRealSaul69) March 8, 2023
Saul’s point — later amplified by KSHB-TV’s Nick Jacobs — got me wondering about how Chiefs head coach Andy Reid has really compared to the rest of the league during his first decade in Kansas City.
After all... it’s not exactly a news flash that the Chiefs have been a dominant team since 2018, when Patrick Mahomes was named the NFL’s MVP in his first season leading the Kansas City offense.
So I looked it up.
This was a little surprising. Despite the team’s struggles since quarterback Tom Brady departed, wouldn’t we expect the New England Patriots to top this list? But if we included postseason games, surely New England would lead the way... right?
NFL 2013-2022 (Reg/Post)
As we see here, however, the Chiefs under Reid have had the best record even when postseason games are included.
Let’s be fair: Kansas City has a ways to go before it could surpass the success the Patriots had during the final decade that Brady and head coach Bill Belichick were together. From 2010 through 2019, the Patriots had a combined record of 141-42-0. At 0.7770, that’s significantly better than the Chiefs have done over the last ten years.
As long as we’re making these kinds of comparisons, though, let’s ask what might be a more relevant question: how have Reid and Mahomes’ first five years compared to Belichick and Brady’s first five years together — in which the Patriots won three Super Bowls?
Ready for another surprise? From 2001 through 2005, New England’s combined record was 0.7470. In the last five years, Kansas City’s has been significantly better: 0.7810.
Sure... the Patriots won one more Super Bowl than the Chiefs. But Reid and Mahomes have won more consistently, appearing in five consecutive AFC Championships. Belichick and Brady only had three conference title appearances during the corresponding period.
The bottom line
Now that Kansas City has won its second championship in four seasons, few would now deny that under Reid (and with Mahomes) the Chiefs have been the league’s dominant team. These numbers make that very clear.
But they also show that even without Mahomes, Kansas City has been one of the league’s top teams over the last decade. The credit for that accomplishment goes to Reid — along with general managers John Dorsey and Brett Veach, who have skillfully constructed the rosters Reid (and his staff) have coached to so much success.
But the larger question is always the same: can the Chiefs become as successful as the Patriots? It’s clear that during the last five years, the team has made a great start. As we begin Reid’s second decade of stewardship, the next five years are likely to provide the answer.