Nonetheless, there’s something endearing in regards to the Kansas Town Chiefs trainer nicknamed Giant Crimson. He’s extra Giant Grey now, abruptly 61, now not the younger Inexperienced Bay quarterbacks trainer who went to Philadelphia and constructed a sustainable winner that completed the entirety apart from a Tremendous Bowl triumph. Stable good fortune defines him: 15 playoff appearances over 21 seasons in Philadelphia and Kansas Town, simply 3 dropping campaigns, 207 common season victories and 14 extra postseason wins. But Reid may well be maximum recognized for improving from heartbreak.
There are the agonizing defeats at the soccer box, together with 5 losses within the convention championship spherical. And there was once the better, private loss in 2012 when his oldest son, Garrett, died of a heroin overdose. On the finish of that season, Reid misplaced his activity with the Eagles after completing Four-12, the worst file of his occupation. As a substitute of taking a damage, he jumped on the probability to rebuild the Chiefs, who have been a 2-14 staff when he arrived. Beneath Reid, the Chiefs haven’t had a dropping season, and now he’s main them to their first Tremendous Bowl in 50 years. And they have got arrived in Miami with a 24-year-old MVP quarterback, and the quickest and most classy offense the NFL has noticed in reasonably a while.
That is Reid’s 2d Tremendous Bowl look, and even though it sort of feels Kansas Town is ready as much as chase championships for a number of extra years, you will have to know higher than to dream that a long way forward. Reid indubitably is aware of higher. His perfect alternative is earlier than him presently; this recreation gives no assurances in regards to the long run. Reid understands how exhausting it’s to get right here. With 221 victories within the common season and playoffs mixed, he occupies a doubtful position in historical past because the winningest NFL trainer who hasn’t received the large one.
Many of us who appreciate his consistency and human decency would chunk a hollow within the wooden to assist him get thru that championship door. However for up to Reid almost certainly needs it, his point of view stays as balanced as ever.
Reid received’t make it about him. He by no means has, now not even if he was once grieving the unthinkable lack of his son. When you need him to mention greater than “He did a pleasant activity” in answering a query, you imagine him uninteresting. However this week, as he resists communicate of his legacy as he prepares for San Francisco, it’s more straightforward to respect Reid’s means.
“I’m now not excellent with all of that,” Reid mentioned when requested whether or not a Tremendous Bowl win may just spice up his Corridor of Reputation candidacy. “I’m simply looking to get the place we will be able to do smartly in opposition to the 49ers and win that recreation.”
Reid was once the primary trainer I coated after faculty throughout a one-year stint with the Philadelphia Inquirer. He was once tricky for a tender journalist as a result of he wouldn’t raise a mediocre query with a lovely anecdote. But if he wasn’t status in the back of a bouquet of microphones, Reid was once other. He would do fast one-on-ones with the beat writers throughout the week for those who wanted him, and throughout the ones moments you learned he wasn’t only a trainer in the back of a lectern with a purposely flat have an effect on as a result of he hated the media. In personal, Reid is charismatic. He’s passionate and extra spirited than he turns out. He’s humorous, and his humor extends past the disarming, self-deprecating jokes he incessantly makes about his weight when he needs to lighten the temper.
However greater than something, I take into account he had some way of connecting and instilling self assurance in other people, and when I used to be 22 and in over my head, it supposed so much to understand the reputedly gruff head trainer can have a relaxing impact.
On the finish of our conversations, Reid used to mention complimentary issues about my writing taste, and we had ongoing chats about poetry and growing pictures with phrases. We’d discuss our love for studying. The entire whilst, he was once affected person in serving to me be informed one of the crucial nuances had to quilt a certified sports activities beat. It wasn’t some improbable, call-me-anytime, I’ll-tell-you-anything courting, however it had excellent substance.
“He’s an excellent guy,” mentioned Kansas Town offensive coordinator Eric Bieniemy, who performed for Reid throughout his ultimate season in 1999. “He’s an excellent human. He’s an excellent mentor. He’s an excellent chief.”
On Sunday, the Chiefs wore white and pink Hawaiian shirts throughout their flight to south Florida to have fun Reid’s go back to the Tremendous Bowl. On Monday, the gamers wore any other considered one of his favourite pieces, Nike Air Power 1 footwear, to the Opening Night time tournament. Reid has at all times had shut relationships together with his gamers, however he turns out particularly on the subject of his present staff.
“It’s actually like enjoying with a father determine,” punter Dustin Colquitt mentioned.
Reid gave his present defensive coordinator, Steve Spagnuolo, his first NFL activity 20 years in the past. Spagnuolo considers it a very powerful courting of his occupation.
“It’s as a result of the distinction I’ve for him,” Spagnuolo mentioned. “Andy’s the perfect within the league, in my view. He’s rock-solid. By no means up, by no means down. When it’s going unhealthy . . . after I first got here to Philadelphia, I take into account we had a few unhealthy losses, and also you’re going into the body of workers assembly and also you’re looking forward to the pinnacle trainer to tear everyone. By no means Andy. Simply secure. ‘Let’s stay doing what we’re doing, guys,’ and everyone buys into that. It’s simple to imagine in Andy Reid as a result of the way in which he’s. It in point of fact is.”
Reid ranks 6th amongst coaches at the occupation victories listing. The 5 forward of him are legends: Don Shula, George Halas, Belichick, Tom Landry and Earl “Curly” Lambeau. As an offensive innovator, he has grown from being a pointy instructor and play caller within the West Coast offense to the writer of a hybrid gadget that combines West Coast rules with faculty ideas designed to position rapid gamers in house. And with Patrick Mahomes as his quarterback, it feels as even though there are nonetheless probabilities left to consider.
In stabilizing two up to now mercurial franchises, Reid has performed paintings that will excite with regards to any training purist. The one factor he lacks is that Lombardi Trophy.
So right here he’s, in spite of everything again on the Tremendous Bowl, dressed in an epic floral pink Tommy Bahama blouse. And except you’re a 49ers fan or root for one of the most Chiefs’ fiercest opponents, you will have to be attracted to Reid, his tale and his pursuit of the elusive.
“I’ve had such a lot of excellent reports in my occupation,” Reid mentioned. “I’m now not fascinated with drive or something. Simply taking all of it in and getting in a position to take a look at to play a excellent soccer recreation. I’m going to experience this.”
At the out of doors, he’s sit back and monotone, as same old. So that you’ll have to need it for him. Reid will stay his true emotions tucked beneath his trademark furry mustache. However, come on, Giant Crimson has performed sufficient to deserve a large ring, hasn’t he?
If he in spite of everything breaks thru, let’s see him attempt to suppress the ones feelings.