Reid brings change in offensive philosophy to KC
Reid brings change in offensive philosophy
With Andy Reid now in charge as the head coach, the Chiefs' run-first mentality is about to change dramatically. (Brad Mills-USA TODAY SPORTS)
January 5, 2013
KANSAS CITY, Mo. – No team in the entire AFC passed the ball fewer times (475) than the Chiefs did in 2012.
And that is an astonishing fact for a team that didn't actually lead in a game in regulation until the ninth game of the season. It is also almost unfathomable for a team that finished 2-14 and lost nine of its games by 15 or more points.
But with Andy Reid now in charge as the new Chiefs' head coach, that run-run-run approach is about to change dramatically.
Chiefs fans should be prepared, and perhaps excited, for a seismic shift in offensive philosophy.
Reid will bring to Kansas City the West Coast version of offense he learned under Mike Holmgren in Green Bay, an offense Reid then personalized in 14 years as the Eagles coach.
Reid also will bring with him a personnel strategy he learned by watching Ron Wolf in Green Bay, a strategy that focuses more on acquiring beefy, pass-protecting offensive linemen and mobile, strong-armed quarterbacks than it does on flashy skill-set players such as running backs and wide receivers.
Under the Chiefs' last three coaches – Herm Edwards, Todd Haley and Romeo Crennel – the Chiefs steered away from putting the game in the hands of the quarterback.
That also will change, most likely immediately, as Reid will entertain his options with the No. 1 overall pick. In Green Bay, Wolf early on targeted a trade with the Falcons for a young, strong-armed quarterback named Brett Favre, whom Reid worked with as the Packers' quarterbacks coach.
Reid's first move in Philadelphia was spending his first draft pick on quarterback Donovan McNabb. Reid may do the same in Kansas City, perhaps using that first pick on West Virginia quarterback Geno Smith.
And don't be surprised if Reid also swings a deal for Seattle backup quarterback Matt Flynn, who tutored under Mike McCarthy in Green Bay. Reid is friends with Seahawks general manager John Schneider, who worked with Reid in Green Bay in the 1990s.
It seems more than likely that Reid will clean out the Chiefs' quarterback stable of Matt Cassel, Brady Quinn and Ricky Stanzi, none of whom seem suited to operate Reid's version of the West Coast offense, which not only emphasizes precision timing on slant and crossing routes but also requires touch on long, vertical throws.
It is an offense Chiefs fans will recall from the mid-1990s when Marty Schottenheimer was coach. Schottenheimer and general manager Carl Peterson not only brought in Joe Montana, but they also hired offensive coordinator Paul Hackett, another West Coast offense disciple, to change offensive philosophies.
“There are a lot of versions of that type of offense,” Schottenheimer told FOXSportsKansasCity.com. “We still had an emphasis on the run, but a lot of those short passes and completions were the same as a run. You want to keep gaining yards, keep the down and distance short, keep moving the chains.
“That's what we tried to do and that's what Joe was so good at. Then you take your shots down field.”
That is precisely Reid's philosophy, and Schottenheimer believes it will work with the Chiefs.
“They definitely have some talent on that roster,” Schottenheimer said. “Obviously it will have to start with the quarterback and (Reid) will determine what he wants there.”
Schottenheimer, by the way, gives the Reid hiring a thumbs up. Schottenheimer spoke with Chiefs owner Clark Hunt “a few times” over the last couple of months but said he wouldn't classify his role as a consultant during the coaching search.
“I presented my opinion on certain matters,” Schottenheimer said.
Reid, like Schottenheimer when he took over the Chiefs in 1989, will be in a hurry-up mode to install his system, starting with personnel.
Reid's approach in that area is similar to Wolf's – invest your resources in a quarterback and an offensive line to protect him. That strategy will be reinforced particularly if Reid and the Chiefs land Packers director of football operations John Dorsey as their new general manager. Dorsey tutored under Wolf and then later Ted Thompson.
One of Reid's early moves in Philadelphia was signing free-agent offensive tackle Jon Runyan to a six-year, $30 million contract, which at the time made Runyan the highest paid offensive lineman in NFL history.
That becomes significant now as the Chiefs will have to decide on their own free-agent left tackle Branden Albert, who may be in for a huge payday with Reid in charge.
Reid also will have to find a replacement for guard/center Ryan Lilja, who announced his retirement after this season.
Another player heading for free-agency is wide receiver Dwayne Bowe, whom the Chiefs franchised last year. At 6 feet 2 and 221 pounds, Bowe fits the mold of receivers Reid prefers – big and physical.
But it remains to be seen whether Reid believes he can cure Bowe of his tendency to drop passes and play soft, or if he chooses to look for a No. 1 receiver elsewhere.
Jamaal Charles' role is likely to be affected the most under Reid.
Charles ran the ball 285 times last season with Crennel as coach but there's virtually no chance Charles will run the ball that many times again in a season under Reid.
Instead, Charles likely will become a bigger threat out of the backfield as a receiver. The most passes Charles has caught in a season is 45. That number may virtually double in Reid's offense.
That versatility is key for any running back playing for Reid, whose favorite all-time back was Brian Westbrook.
“I never coached a running back as smart as him,” Reid once said of Westbrook.
Speedy wideout Dexter McCluster may also see his role change under Reid, who may take McCluster out of the slot and insert him more in the backfield.
“The key for any coach coming in is get the system you want in place and get the people you want in place,” Schottenheimer said. “You change the culture.”
And change is starting now at One Arrowhead Drive.
The more I read about Andy's offense, the more I think it will be Geno. His strengths fit Reid's offense pretty well.
Andy Reid expected to employ West Coast offense with Chiefs
By RANDY COVITZ
The Kansas City Star
Published: Friday, Jan. 4, 2013 - 12:00 am
The Chiefs' hiring of new head coach Andy Reid, who is expected to bring his West Coast offense from Philadelphia to Kansas City, conjures memories of the mid-to-late 1990s at Arrowhead Stadium.
That's when coach Marty Schottenheimer and general manager Carl Peterson, frustrated by falling short in the playoffs, ditched their smash-mouth offense in 1993, brought in offensive coordinator Paul Hackett, acquired Joe Montana, signed Marcus Allen, drafted Tony Gonzalez and implemented the West Coast offense made famous by Bill Walsh with the San Francisco 49ers.
The Chiefs didn't win a Super Bowl with that system, but they reached the AFC Championship Game in 1993 and went to the postseason in 1994 as well as 1995 and 1997, when they posted 13-3 regular-season records.
Reid had similar success and frustration after bringing the West Coast offense to Philadelphia from Green Bay, where he was an assistant to Mike Holmgren. His Eagles reached the playoffs nine times in a span of 10 years, including five NFC Championship Game appearances and one Super Bowl loss.
The offense is a quarterback-oriented attack based on a progression-type passing game with mostly, but not exclusively, short and intermediate routes. It is dependent on the quarterback's ability to read coverages quickly, identify the progression of receivers and throw in rhythm so he hits the receivers in stride, enabling them to gain yards after the catch.
"It's the same offense," said former Chiefs offensive lineman Rich Baldinger, now an analyst for Metro Sports and Channel 5. "Now you have to find a quarterback who can hit all those short reads and understands all those different routes.
"Reid is going to use the pass to set up the run. A flare pass to them is the same as running a toss sweep. Think of Jerry Rice running slants, quick in-routes, curls . . . Whatever you call it, that's not the point. You have to look at the roster and see if you have the pieces of the puzzle. When you look at a team that had only eight passing touchdowns and nine rushing touchdowns, do we have anything to fit whatever offense he wants to run?"
From 1993-97, the Chiefs featured San Francisco-trained quarterbacks in Montana, Steve Bono (1995-96) and Elvis Grbac, plus Rich Gannon (1997). They threw to Allen and Kimble Anders out of the backfield, and to quick wide receivers Willie Davis and J.J. Birden in the mid-1990s and bigger targets Andre Rison and Derrick Alexander later in the decade.
The West Coast offense is also very tight end-friendly, which took advantage of the skills of the Hall of Fame-bound Gonzalez, who played in the same system in college at California under Steve Mariucci, another Holmgren disciple.
The Chiefs would seem to have some parts that can make the transition to the West Coast offense, starting with running back Jamaal Charles, who has good hands coming out of the backfield. If the Chiefs can re-sign wide receiver Dwayne Bowe, and if tight ends Tony Moeaki and Kevin Boss can stay healthy, they would be good fits.
The question is at quarterback.
"This team is unique because both your quarterbacks don't show you a whole lot in either the short passing game or the deep passing game," Baldinger said of Matt Cassel and Brady Quinn. "It's (difficult) to think either one of these guys are going to lead that style of offense."
Reid will have the first overall pick in the April NFL Draft ï¿½" as well as the top pick in each of the seven rounds ï¿½" to find a quarterback. In Reid's first draft with the Eagles, in 1999, he selected quarterback Donovan McNabb with the second overall pick. McNabb deftly operated the West Coast offense, leading the Eagles to more postseason wins (seven) than any quarterback in Eagles history while earning NFC Player of the Year honors in 2004. McNabb went to six Pro Bowls in his 11 seasons with Philadelphia.
Tennessee Titans quarterback Matt Hasselbeck, who broke into the league with Green Bay when Reid was an assistant to Holmgren - and led Seattle to a Super Bowl under Holmgren - said no two West Coast offenses are the same.
"I've never heard Mike Holmgren use that term; I've never heard Andy Reid use that term . . . I've never heard Bill Walsh use that term," Hasselbeck said. "To me, that's just a language and a way of calling plays. It's like saying we're speaking Spanish. But there's a huge difference between Spain, Mexico and all the other places that speak that language.
"I've had seven head coaches, and six used what people say is West Coast terminology, but I had to learn a different offense every time it changed."
How a team attacks from the West Coast offense, Hasselbeck said, depends on the personnel.
"If you're feeling good about your quarterback's skill-set, and you're feeling good about your pass protection and about your wide receivers' opportunity to win one-on-ones downfield, then you'll try to push the ball down the field," Hasselbeck said. "If not, then you're going to try to find creative ways to help your guys get open.
"One of the things Michael Vick does really, really well is play-action, take a deep shot - play-action bootleg, deep shot. And (Eagles running back) LeSean McCoy is a great runner . . .
"McNabb was a similar type player. He was good at taking a deep shot on a post route . . . those plays are run by a lot of different people. It's a matter of putting your own personality on each player."
I don't see him taking Geno and then trading for Flynn.
In terms of arm strength, they're pretty much at different ends of the spectrum.
I love it when they say bullshit like this.
The part about flashy Rbs is hilarious. Westbrook was a flashy back. McCoy is a flashy back.
Reid isn't stupid. He knows he can't operate under 1999 rules.
Plus, his lineman in Philly were maulers, but they were agile. Jason Peters for one.
I can't state how disastrous the WCO will be here without Montana...
Just because "you" personally don't like it or the player doesn't mean it might not happen.
I've been a fan for 39 years now, I learned a long time ago, they don't ask our opinion. :mad:
I splooge at the thought of Charles catching swing passes in space, or sneaking out of the backfield down the seam.
Bring ON that pass heavy mindset you big football zombie you.
1. Flynn didn't really do anything in GB.....he had two good games.
2. Green Bay didn't want to pay to hang onto him and they didn't even deem him good enough to give him the franchise tag and try and find a trade partner.
3. He was supposed to be this QB that was going to get the next big payday. He was linked to a number of teams......and then he signed with the Seahawks for a "meh" sized contract.
4. All you heard after that was Flynn was going to be the starter.....and then he was beat out by a 3rd round QB who everyone thought was to small to play in the NFL.
Definitely sounds like a guy we should trade for. :rolleyes:
Our offensive gameplans over the last four years were designed to minimize the number of reads Cassel had to make. Without pressure, he was simply bad. With pressure, he was completely inept. Cassel would have shattered the INT record if the Chiefs had passed as often as the Eagles.
Bowe and Charles are perfect players for a WCO. Besides, Reid's WCO isn't Gruden's. It has more of a vertical element to it, not just dink and dunk down the field.
which is why we need a SPEED WR
and not turds like Baldwin and McCluster who are too ****ing slow for the WCO
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