What We Learned From Chiefs Coach Andy Reid on Monday

Reid spoke with the media on Monday afternoon

OPENING STATEMENT:"Alright, I don't have any of the injury stuff for you yet. The guys are just starting to come in. I'd like to just thank the fans for coming out and supporting us on Christmas Day, which isn't always the easiest thing to do – come to a football game. But, they were there, packed. The weather was bad. They stayed – they stayed right to the end. It was quite a tribute to them. We appreciated every bit of that. I thought turnovers were a factor in this game. We were able to convert on their turnovers and turned those into points. All three phases contributed, which I thought was big. Too many penalties; we have to cut back on those as we go here. We had eight penalties for 65 yards. We won the time of possession. We did well in the red zone – those were positive things on both sides of the ball."

Q:You're at that point of the season where you made it to the playoffs, still have more to do in the regular season – how do you approach the game?

REID:"Yeah, so we have to play the game right now. There hasn't been anything decided besides that you're in the playoffs. There are other things that can be decided. So, with that, we're going to go through the process and get ourselves ready to play against a team that never gives up and that's San Diego. As long as that Philip Rivers is there, man, he's something. That's the way they play, and their defense plays hard and aggressive, so we have to get ourselves ready to go."

Q:I know no one gives you a trophy for making the playoffs and there is a lot more work to do, but three out of the four years now in the playoffs since you've been here. This organization had some trouble getting into the playoffs before you got here. What kind of achievement is that in the moment? 

REID:"Yeah, you don't really look back, and you're always trying to strive to get better going forward. I'm proud of the guys and the effort that they put forward. I told you when I first got here that some of the primary leaders that were still here said, 'You tell us what to do and we'll just do it.' They've kind of kept with that. I'm proud of the way they've handled themselves, and being the leaders that they are on the team and the coaches. Really, until you get the trophy, that's the unfinished business that we're all trying to get and take care of."

Q:Was there any potential that Spencer Ware could get back into the game?

REID:"Yeah, he could have played. I just decide to keep him out. He was sore. We just have to see how he does today. Sometimes, you sleep on those things, and it looked like it was in the rib area. You sleep on those things and it could be a problem. He's going to have an MRI just to check things out here."

Q:Did you see any of the Raiders game on Saturday?

REID:"I didn't watch it."

Q:What did you think when you heard Derek Carr had that injury?

REID:"Well, I got to know him over the Pro Bowl, and he's a good kid. I'm all about everybody being healthy and let's go have the best team win type thing. I don't wish injuries on anybody. I'd rather have everybody out there, and let's figure out who's the best team that way. So, my heart goes out to him, but he'll have a lot of good years ahead of him as he goes here." 

Q:What did you think of the offense's execution last night?

REID:"I'm proud of them. We were playing against a good defense -- one of the best defenses in the National Football League. Even though they were banged up in a couple spots, they were still very effective with how they played. The guys executed and their focus was spot on. They spend a lot of time on their attention to detail. We felt like we were off by just a hair in a few places and in this business, you can't be off by a hair or things will go crazy. We tightened that up -- the guys did. They tightened it up and were more accurate I thought. When they had opportunities, they made plays. Are there a couple we'd like to have back? Yeah. You never come out with a perfect game. The guys played at a high level against a good opponent."

Q:Where do you come up with the plays like the one to Dontari Poe?

REID:"As a lineman, you always kind of dream of that. So why not? I've got 51 percent of the vote so I just went with it. It was for 'T' [Terez Paylor] and I. Hitting the sled and everything that we had to do. Having the opportunity to put one up like that was great. That's the first spiral he's thrown on that. He really did a nice job on it. He elevated more than four inches off the ground to throw it. It was beautiful."

Q:How much of the decision is that fact that you like the play and how much of it is because you have that trust in Poe?

REID:"That's important -- you've got to trust the player. What people don't know is that he's a phenomenal athlete. A great musician too and a phenomenal athlete. To be able to use his talent that way is kind of a fun thing. The guys rally around it too. Somewhere along the line, this game was designed to have a little fun so that mixes into it."

Q:How far back from the goal line would you have used that play?

REID:"We pulled him off at the three yard line, so somewhere inside of three."

Q:Despite not getting obscure sack numbers, can you talk about the pressure the defensive provided up front?

REID:"Dee [Ford] and Chris [Jones] were in there a lot. Tamba [Hali] was getting good push too. That kind of allowed those guys to make plays. Dontari Poe had a couple nice rushes and a sack taken away due to a penalty. Even though we didn't get [Trevor Siemian] on the ground for a sack, we always had somebody there. In particular, we had that good inside push with Chris and Poe which made [Siemian] alter his throws. [Rakeem] Nunez-Roches continues to keep coming and he gives you great energy out there. He's been a great addition."

Q: What kind of strides have you seen from Eric Fisher this year going from last year to now?

REID: "I think the neatest thing is some of his peers voted him as an alternate for the Pro Bowl which I thought was a tribute to the kid. You've seen him work hard. He's taken whatever people have thrown at him from the outside and hasn't let that affect him from how he goes about his business. He's still kept his personality, he has kind of a goofy personality and it kind of keeps everybody loose yet he knows when it's time to crank it up which is important."

Q: How close is [Eric] Fisher to reaching a ceiling as a football player?

REID: "I think he still continues to get better. I think the next couple of years here you'll probably see closer to the finished product. I still think the more he plays he seems to get better as it goes on here."

Q: How did Terrance Smith look?

REID: "I thought he did some good things. I haven't had a chance to meet with Bob [Sutton] yet but I thought he did some nice things there. I don't know exactly how many snaps he came out with but he was in the mix when they were in their base personnel. He did well on special teams too."

Q: Was it just giving the kid a shot because he looked good in practice or did you think he'd be a good matchup for what he could do?

REID: "He shows good instincts, he's a smart kid, not only in the classroom but he's a smart football player. You get two good young guys, really three good young guys, but he and D.J. [Alexander] play that same position and we wanted to give each one of them the opportunity, so that's what we did up here."

Q: Is there any concern that Justin Houston is going to miss the playoffs with his knee swelling?

REID: "I think we just take it day by day and we just see. He felt a little bit better yesterday than he did the day before. He felt like things were getting better. I think that's what we're going on here. I know how these things work. I've been there and I know it. I think it's just a matter of calming down a little bit. I think if we just take it day by day we'll be good to go."

Q: On Mitchell Schwartz

REID: "I thought on his pass protection he did a real nice job there. To come out of that thing with multiple sacks is a major accomplishment against that crew. I thought he played very well there."

Q: With Denver calling a timeout before the [Dontari] Poe pass, did the extra time have any impact on the play call decision?

REID: "No, I had him in before but I didn't realize that we had lost that much yardage. I got him out and waited till we got back down there. That's better in there where it was."

Q: On Alex Smith

REID: "Alex [Smith] I think has had a good year. He's had a good four years but he's put together, this week, he put together a good game. You remember that interception where he got hit and the ball got out and got away from him, besides that, this was one of his better games since he's been here. That's a tribute to him because nobody works harder or spends more time at it. He's very diligent to his work. It's always good to see him play well."

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