When the Super Bowl champion Kansas City Chiefs were welcomed to the White House in Washington D.C. on Monday, it made quite an impression on them. Head coach Andy Reid was among those anxious to talk about it when he met with reporters after Thursday’s team activity (OTA) session.
“You put all the politics aside,” marveled Reid. “You’re not a Democrat, you’re not a Republican [and] you’re not an independent. You’re just an American. I thought that was the neatest part of the thing: that everybody was just enjoying the history.”
Unsurprisingly, the food impressed Reid.
“I’ve never had this before,” he said, “a French toast, grilled cheese and ham sandwich that they sprinkled a little bit of powdered sugar on. I mean, it was phenomenal.
“There was [an] abundance of this. Then they had chicken fingers — exotic chicken fingers — and then maybe the best part was that they had little bite-size squares of the heart of the watermelon.”
The head coach made it a point to seek out the chef.
“I went back and talked to him,” he recalled. “I just said, ‘You guys are unbelievable.’ I mean, whoever cut all of that out — [who] had the patience to do that — my hat goes off to him.”
But Reid said that there was more to the visit than the food — or the event on the south lawn that reporters covered.
“They had different military guys in each of the rooms they let us go in,” explained Reid. “The guys were experts on the paintings and the architecture — and whose special room [it] was.
“So you got the history — everything from the oldest table to the oldest pitcher. You got the history of [all] that. I think the guys appreciated that part.”
Safety Justin Reid was among those who did.
“The White House was sick!” he declared. “I didn’t know what to expect when we first went out there — but it was a good time. I’m like an information junkie, too. So I really liked the art curators there, talking about the artwork and the furniture. And then we got to talk to some of the corporals and the Marines and Secret Service officers. It’s really cool.”
The safety said that he and his teammates got to be in places normally off-limits to tourists.
“Most of the time — when you have public tours — they have it roped off,” he explained. “We got to actually go be in it — and sit on the furniture. Me and a couple of guys got to talk to some of the White House staff about our experiences, championship habits and handling pressure — and give our insights to it. So it was really unique.”
The head coach was impressed by the President spending a lot of time with the team.
“He spent a ton of time with us,” said Reid. “More than we thought. We were thinking maybe 10 minutes [would be what] you’d get from the President, but he was very giving there.”
Reid would know because he’d made the White House appearance for a Super Bowl-winning while he was an assistant coach with the Green Bay Packers in the mid-1990s. In those days, it was a little different.
“Some of the restrictions are tighter now,” noted Reid. “But they tried not to make you feel that way — that we were ‘it’ and they appreciated us being there. Like I said, the hospitality was phenomenal.”