Nuts and Bolts
- The Kansas City Chiefs held their fifth practice of OTAs on Wednesday morning.
- Like has been the case throughout all OTAs thus far, Eric Berry, Jamaal Charles, Tamba Hali, Vernon Harris, Justin Houston and Mike Williams did not practice.
- Jaye Howard, who didn't practice on Tuesday, was out again on Wednesday due to personal reasons.
Plays of Note
- Rookie Tyreek Hill may have made the best play of OTAs thus far, hauling in a deep, over-the-shoulder catch on a pass from Aaron Murray.
- Marcus Peters hauled in an interception and Marcus Cooper had a nice breakup down the field on a pass intended for running back Spencer Ware.
A Look At Day Five of OTAs
A look into day five of phase three of the Chiefs offseason program at the University of Kansas Hospital Training Complex
What We Learned From the Assistant Coaches on Wednesday
CO-OFFENSIVE COORDINATOR BRAD CHILDRESS
Sam McDowell (Kansas City Star):What are your thoughts on Kevin Hogan?
CHILDRESS: "Quick study, there's a lot of carryover from the system he ran at Stanford to what we're doing here. He can quickly kind of transpose those into our language. You can see him, he's with you, he's agile minded, he can hang with you all the way."
McDowell:With Matt being in the headset and Coach Reid as well, how do you guys determine selecting the plays in practice and things like that?
CHILDRESS: "Well Matt (Nagy) and I kind of set up the practices through Coach Reid and make sure different guys are getting different turns, you don't want the same guy doing the same play every time. We kind of set it up where the ones take the most, the twos take the second most and the threes take the least. For a guy like (Kevin) Hogan or a guy that's operating as the third quarterback, it's what being a backup is all about, being able to take few reps and stay up to speed."
Mick Shaffer (Time Warner Cable Sports Channel):Tyler (Bray) is a guy who's been here a few years now, have you seen strides?
CHILDRESS: "Yes I have. Just as I was mentioning before, you really want to see bodies around him. He's a big, tall, physical presence with a big arm. You want to see that decision making when there's a bunch of push in the pocket or someone comes free and whacks him and he's got to get up and make the play next time. "
Shaffer:Is there one thing or a couple things that you're working on with Alex Smith at this point?
CHILDRESS: "We always identify things that he can get better on. He can get better in some ways with his eyes. He does a great job with his feet in the pocket, but being able to lie with your eyes is a huge deal as a quarterback and so we talk a little bit about that."
CO-OFFENSIVE COORDINATOR MATT NAGY
Mick Shaffer (Time Warner Cable Sports Channel):On OTAs:
NAGY: "It's been really good. First of all, we got great weather, so that helps, the fields are great. Being in year four now, guys are playing fast. It's so nice to be able to come out here and play some football, get back out against a defense and get competitive."
Shaffer:Is the backup quarterback position going to be a competition throughout the summer?
NAGY: "Yeah, absolutely. Going into this camp, you have to slate guys in certain positions just for reps. The biggest thing is letting them know that it is an open competition. Those guys, that's how they want it. They're not going to look at it any other way, that's how it was the last three years when Chase (Daniel) was here. Even though our roles were all set, they were always competing. They're all that way, they all have a great relationship with one another. I think if you asked all three of them right now, I think they all understand that it's an open competition and they're going to battle."
Shaffer:Kevin Hogan is a smart guy who played a lot of college football. Does he seem like he's ahead of the curve?
NAGY: "Absolutely. The first day we met and got together and we went through the playbook, we actually started crossing off the plays that he did know because he was so familiar with the verbiage that we have. Having a rookie that comes in here who knows the verbiage is a huge benefit. But the game is still going to be fast to him out here just because of the level of play. And again, some of the play concepts are totally different."
Shaffer:Do Tyler Bray and Aaron Murray realize how big of an opportunity is in front of them right now?
NAGY: "Yeah they certainly know that, they're well aware of it, we talk about it. We've talked about it for years now. Even with Chase in previous years, you never know what could happen with Alex (Smith) then Chase, you're one or two plays away. They're going into it with their mindset that 'hey, I'm going to do everything I possibly can to earn that position, earn that spot.' But there's no hard feelings towards one another, they're helping each other out. We all help each other out and Alex does the same thing."
SPECIAL TEAMS COORDINATOR DAVE TOUB
Adam Teicher (ESPN):Previously you compared Tyreek Hill to Devin Hester. What did you mean by that?
TOUB: "When you evaluate players, you always compare them to other people. He is a dynamic returner, you can see that clearly on tape. His speed, and I probably said a couple things, he's Devin Hester-ish. But to compare him directly to Devin Hester, that's not fair to Devin, that's not fair to the kid. It's a conversation we had in the draft rooms."
Teicher: Other than speed, what makes him Devin Hester-ish?
TOUB: "He's a really good catcher. He makes people miss. He's got that great agility, great quickness, great first-step quickness. His top speed is second to none. That 4.25 speed is real. That's one thing we've learned over the last month. He's got legitimate speed. It doesn't take much for you to see it."
Ashley Scobey (Kansas City Star): How sure-handed is he?
TOUB: "He's very good. He's a solid catcher. He did both at Oklahoma State and Western Alabama, so he's got a lot of experience. Over the last month, he's really shown that he is a really good solid catcher."
Scobey: Do you think he will do both for you?
TOUB: "No question. He has the ability to do both."
Teicher: Do you think he's more established as a punt returner?
TOUB: "I think he's more advanced as a punt returner for a rookie. He's really coming in at a high level."
Teicher: Is that hard to find?
TOUB: "It's very hard. Those guys are usually second round, sometimes top of the third round picks. We're fortunate to get him."
DEFENSIVE COORDINATOR BOB SUTTON
Mick Shaffer (Time Warner Cable Sports Channel):Are you happy to get back on the field?
SUTTON: "Yeah, when you get to this phase, Phase III where we get OTAs where we can really kind of practice and do everything, is always exciting for everybody. Of course the weather is great right now, that's been good. Anytime we can get out on the field and groom, it really makes a big difference. We're excited, players are working hard. Just like every year, you have to keep improving at this time. This is when you set your foundation and you kind of takeoff from here."
Shaffer:What have you seen from the rookies on defense?
SUTTON: "They've done a great job because they're caught in that 'We have to catch up' mode because we've moved ahead with the varsity guys, so to speak, before they got in. so they're catching up at a pretty rapid pace here. They had the rookie minicamp, which was good, because that helps them be by themselves and learn the system. And I think the older guys have done a great job of bringing them along. We're going to count on those guys like every year. Everybody on your roster, you have to believe, is going to try to help your team and you have to find a role for them, find a spot. There's no redshirting here, you have to be ready to play. So we're excited about the effort and the energy. We have a ton of distance to go to get where we want to go. But if they keep working like that, we're going to be fine."
Shaffer:Is having such a young cornerback group necessarily a bad thing?
SUTTON: "No, I think, really, all this is about is you have to be able to do a great job executing the defense, executing the defense, executing the system. There's a learning curve that goes on, but you don't have to be a 10-year veteran to do this. Everybody's different, you just have to get yourself ready to play. You see, Marcus (Peters) came in and did that last year and we need other guys to come in this year and do the same thing. Maybe it's not a starting role, maybe it's a backup, but as we all know, almost everybody ends up getting on the field – through injuries and all the things that occur. We're looking forward to those guys. And again, their energy has been great, they've worked hard and we just have to keep building."
OFFENSIVE LINE COACH ANDY HECK
Terez Paylor (Kansas City Star):What do you want opposing defensive lines to think about after they've faced this offensive line?
HECK: "One of the things we talk about all the time, as an offensive line, is we want to be great finishers. What does that mean – it means playing to the echo of the whistle, playing physical football, getting after people in the run and the pass game. When we look on that tape, we want to be proud of our effort."
Karen Kornacki (KMBC):How are you using these OTAs for your group?
HECK: "This is a great time of year for us to really hone in on the fundamentals. We've got some individual drills where we're drilling specific things that we want to be better at. And a lot of it relates to the passing game and protection and how we want to put our guys in position to have the most success as pass protectors. Even though we don't have the pads on, it's not a very physical camp, we can get a lot done fundamentally."
Kornacki:Do you see more stability on the line this year?
HECK: "Changeover, turnover in this league, that's part of the deal. Every year there's new guys to add and bring in. it is our fourth year now in this offense with Coach Reid, so there is a certain amount of stability that comes with that. Guys are picking up where they left off to learn, move forward, learn more of the intricacies of the game. And then adding guys in, we always have and always will cross train guys, because it's a long season. At the end of the day, there's going to be people that have to play in new positions or step up and do something that otherwise would be uncomfortable."
LINEBACKERS COACH GARY GIBBS
Herbie Teope (Topeka Capital-Journal):What have you seen from Dee Ford from last year to this year?
GIBBS: "Well he made some improvements last year and he made some big plays for us down the stretch. This is obviously a new year, we're early in the OTA sessions. He's come back stronger and I think he's got better stamina, got better strength. It's just a matter of continuing to mature and develop his skillset. As he indicated to you yesterday, be more consistent."
Teope:How much confidence does it give you having Ford when you don't have Justin Houston to start off OTAs?
GIBBS: "We had confidence in Dee last year. He had a big game against San Diego. He's a guy that can affect the quarterback, needs to affect the quarterback, needs to continue to improve in all facets of the game – he knows that. He's got a good attitude, he's working hard and time will tell."
Pete Sweeney (Chiefs.com):What type of role do you see for Tamba Hali this year?
GIBBS: "I expect him to go out there and play and be a warrior and play like he always plays."
Sweeney:How has he helped the guys while he hasn't been able to practice?
GIBBS: "He's a very giving player and he wants to help those guys any way he can. And he's done a good job of that, helping those guys in pass rush."
RUNNING BACKS COACH ERIC BIENIEMY
Michael Coleman (KCTV):Do you think that Charcandrick West and Spencer Ware's improvements from last year have translated to offseason workouts?
BIENIEMY: "Oh absolutely. Those guys are doing a heck of a job. Like I said, they're a hardworking group. They do a great job. One thing – and I want this to get out there – Jamaal Charles, even though he's not out here, he does a great job with those guys in the meeting room. Jamaal does a great job. They do a great job communicating in the meeting rooms. They do a great job talking about all the little things that need to be done on a day-to-day basis. And then we have Knile (Davis), and he's doing his thing as well."
Coleman: Talk about the benefit of having Jamaal Charles teach those guys because he was in their boat not long ago.
BIENIEMY: "Leadership. He brings a tremendous wealth of leadership, knowledge. The way he conducts and carries himself on a day-to-day basis. All those things, they go hand in hand into why he's had the success he's had, and those guys are learning from what he's done."
BJ Kissel (Chiefs.com): What's the difference between the personalities in that room? How do you work with that as a coach?
BIENIEMY: "You enjoy it because you wouldn't want everybody the same. Obviously, we'd probably be butting heads, but you've got your quiet types, your outgoing types, you've got your loud types. I've got guys that can't be quiet. I enjoy it. I'm blessed and fortunate, I have a good group of people. I should say a good group of men that understand the importance of being a professional, and they show up to work every single day."
SECONDARY/CORNERBACKS COACH AL HARRIS
Terez Paylor (Kansas City Star):The fact that you got the promotion, what did you think about that?
HARRIS: "It was great to get the title. As far as responsibility, nothing has changed. Nothing has changed at all, I'm still doing the same things I've been doing since I got here. It's just a changed title. I thank Coach Reid and everybody that had something to do with it."
Paylor (Kansas City Star):How do you and Emmitt (Thomas) split these duties, how do you make it work?
HARRIS: "Emmitt has been great as far as helping me along as a young coach. I was coached by Emmitt when he was in Philly. He's done a great job of trying to help coach a young coach, if I get stuck on something he explains it to me and we just go from there."
Paylor (Kansas City Star):How did Andy (Reid) tell you about the title?
HARRIS: "He just called me in and said hey Al we are going to give you a different title, but like I said responsibility wise, nothing has changed since I've been here."
Paylor:Can you bring your aggressive playing nature into coaching these guys and do guys still respond to the aggressive style that your generation did?
HARRIS: "Definitely, I think so, I don't know about anybody else's room but in our room you want to have likeminded guys. You can't be an aggressive coach if your guys are timid so that is all we preach is aggression, aggression, aggression."
DEFENSIVE LINE COACH BRITT REID
Mick Shaffer (Time Warner Cable Sports Channel):What are the challenges of teaching defensive linemen a 3-4 as opposed to other styles of defense?
REID: "It's different, and our defense is a hybrid, so we have to coach both 4-3 and 3-4. It creates unique challenges but we have a great group of guys and they handle it real well. So it's good."
Nick Jacobs (Time Warner Cable Sports Channel):What do you like most about this group of defensive linemen?
REID: "They're not afraid to work. They come out here every day and they want to get better, they want to be the best. They are a really, really close group of guys – they're best friends outside of here and I think that really helps them on the field."
Terez Paylor (Kansas City Star):How much did it mean to you to get this promotion from your dad here with the Chiefs?
REID: "He called me in and we went through the whole process – did the interviews and we did all that. When he did call me in and told me he was going to hire me, it was special. It meant a lot. To get my first position-coaching job from him, and also in the NFL, it was really exciting."
Paylor:Was there any doubt in your mind as to whether or not you'd get hired or not? Was it up in the air?
REID: "Yeah, from my standpoint I didn't know if I was going to get the job or not. Obviously I was hoping. It's a dream job, especially with the guys that we have. But I didn't know, I was just hoping."
Paylor: When you found out they drafted Chris Jones, what were you thinking? That they were testing you early? You have to mold him now. What was your reaction?
REID: "I was just excited to get him. So much talent, big, young, smart guy that can move well. I was excited. I looked at it as more of an opportunity or a blessing than a challenge, just because of the talent. He's really talented and he's going to help our room."
Paylor: How would you describe your coaching style? Are you trying to relate to them, are you trying to push them, are you hard on them? How do you try to get through to them?
REID: "I think each guy is an individual and you've got to treat them as that. What might work for Allen Bailey might not work for Dontari (Poe). So I just try to feel them out. For the most part I just treat them like men. I'm not going to embarrass them, I'm not going to yell at them in front of everybody. If I have a problem with them I'll pull them to the side and tell them I have a problem. For the most part it's a coach-player relationship and we keep it like that."
Paylor: How do you determine how to treat those guys – which guys react to certain things? REID: "I try to talk to these guys. Chris Ballard, he is our pro personnel guy, he told me something that really resonated with me and he learned it from Rod Marinelli. Rod believes that you've got to coach the man first before you coach the player. That really resonated with me. You've got to get to know these guys and once you get to know them as people it will help you a lot as a coach."