As we approach Saturday's 2014 Senior Bowl, it's been exciting to see the dynamic duo of Chiefs head coach Andy Reid and general manager John Dorsey in the stands at Ladd-Peebles Stadium, not missing a move made by any of the 100-plus college seniors trying to earn a job in the NFL.
It was during this very week last season that the two, along with their staffs, united to cover their first Senior Bowl as leaders of the Chiefs; the team's second-year GM sat down with us in Mobile to discuss keys to another successful offseason.
Your start with the Chiefs began just over one year ago, what's the difference with your trip to the Senior Bowl in 2014?
"The difference is, early on, it was an opportunity for me, I had known a lot of the personnel guys here, but it gave me an opportunity to kind of see what their ability was as personnel evaluators. Now, under one year, being the difference is we all know each other; we know philosophically what we’re trying to achieve here. We know exactly what we see in players and we begin to think in like mindset and I think that’s important as an organization to think in like mindset, when it comes to evaluating players; you get an understanding of what we’re trying to accomplish in terms of acquiring players."
Once practices are finished for the day, your entire staff is seen together in the stands, when everybody else is heading to the parking lots, what kinds of things are you discussing?
"It's a collective effort of everybody that’s in this thing and what we’re doing is we’re reviewing the day’s practice, position-by-position, because individually, we each can’t watch everything. Everybody’s broken up into different positions, so what we try to do is evaluate each position day-by-day, have different guys evaluate positions day-by-day and then you get a cross-reference and then we just kind of get a feel for the day of how guys performed and how guys didn’t perform."
How do players prove themselves to you, both on-and-off the field?
"There’s a degree of consistency for how you practice day-in and day-out; I think that’s vitally important, from the interview process, just trying to find out what makes them tick, trying to find out if they passionately love football, are they committed to the game of football, how much football do they actually know? These are little things that begin to chip away, to peel away as the process begins."
What's the key to having success between the personnel side and the coaching staff?
"Having a like mindset, we believe in the same types of philosophies that it takes to find quality players and whether or not they can fit into Andy's scheme. I think the communication, the consistency, the philosophical belief, everybody is on the same page; I think that is huge in anything you’re trying to accomplish."
With the countless hours that you each put in, how do you avoid burnout?
"To me, it’s not a job. I relish waking up every day, understanding that the long-term goal and objective is to bring the pride of the kingdom back. This was just our first year; we’re just starting in our second year and we’ve set the bar high and what we have to do is stay consistent throughout this and never be satisfied. I don’t think you can ever be satisfied in this business at all."