The NFL officially released the 2023 schedule on Tuesday evening.
The Super Bowl Champion Chiefs will open the season on Thursday, September 7, against the Detroit Lions. Coming off of a 9-8 season, Detroit was a surprise showcase opponent for "Banner Night." Reid does not take them lightly — particularly after pass rushers Aiden Hutchinson and James Houston combined for 17.5 sacks as rookies.
Kansas City’s head coach knows it will be a solid early season test for an offensive line with new starters at both tackle positions.
“Their offense is real good too,” Reid observed of the initial opponent. “I don’t want to slight that part of it. But their defense — they’re gritty and fast. We’ll have to be on our ‘A game.’ We signed a couple of tackles that we think are real good. That’ll be a good test for them.”
A marquee home matchup against the Miami Dolphins was shockingly chosen for Kansas City's first game in Germany in Week 9. Though former Chiefs wide receiver Tyreek Hill will not have a much-anticipated return to Arrowhead Stadium, Reid is excited to see his former player on foreign soil.
“He’s a heck of a football player,” Reid said of Hill. “They’re well coached and we’ll have to really play well. We’re looking forward to going to Germany.”
A Super Bowl rematch against the Philadelphia Eagles — where Reid coached for 14 years before coming to Kansas City — awaits in Week 11 after a bye week. Well-acquainted with both franchises, Reid expects the teams to pick up where they left off in February.
“They’re a good football team — a great organization,” Reid stated of his former employer. “As you know, I’m close to a lot of people there. They’ve got a heck of an organization — great city and good players. It should be another knock down, drag out battle.”
The Chiefs will be home for the holidays this season with a traditional rivalry against the Las Vegas Raiders played on Christmas Day — before seeing arguably Kansas City's most fierce current rival in the Cincinnati Bengals on New Year's Eve.
Reid discussed seeing the opponents at GEHA Field at Arrowhead.
True to a life spent coaching, Reid's first mention of the Christmas matchup against Las Vegas is the rarity of a day game on a Monday.
“That’s unique,” he noted in an earlier interview on NFL Network. “Monday game at noon. I mean, that’s unusual — and on top of that, it’s the Raiders. I’m sure they’re saying the same thing. I mean, could you have picked a better rivalry than those two teams?
The Bengals and Chiefs have met in the last two AFC Championship games. In January, Kansas City's young defense stepped up against one of the best offenses in football. Reid looks forward to seeing what the young defenders can do in their second season in defensive coordinator Steve Spagnuolo's schemes.
“The back end was young,” Reid recalled. “And our linebacking corps — that was the first time they had really started a whole season. I thought they improved every week. I think, going into this offseason, things have been a lot smoother picking things up. They’ve been able to build on some things there.
“Spags always has some good ideas obviously, but he’s been able to take it to another level with the guys — and they seem receptive.”