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What We Learned From Wednesday's Media Availability

Andy Reid and Alex Smith spoke to the media on Wednesday

Chiefs Head Coach Andy Reid


Opening Statement: **"As far as injuries go Larry (Laurent Duvernay-Tardif) has a sprained knee, it's day to day and we'll see how he does here. Dee Ford is making progress, but will not practice today. Mitch Morse is, again with the sprain foot, is making progress but he won't practice. Everybody else will be out here. Today's practice is a little bit different coming off the Monday night game. We traditionally do more mental work than we do physical work, so that's what we'll do today. Just get some things down as far as game planning goes and kick it back up a notch tomorrow. I got asked about the Marcus (Peters) situation and I'm sure I'll get asked about it today, so I'm going to answer it before you ask and expect that I won't be asked, so this is the answer. Obviously I had a chance to see what took place, and we can't go in that direction, so it's been addressed. I love the competitiveness of the kid and I appreciate his work ethic and everything else, but as professionals that's not something we want to take place. With that, we look forward to the challenge of playing the Texans. We know that they're a very good football team and playing great football. We've been there, so we know how the crowd is there and that whole deal. So we've got to prepare ourselves and have a good week of practice. We started off with our walkthrough this morning and we'll just keep building on that."

Q: What defines a quarterback of being an elite quarterback?

REID: "That's a tough question, I bet a lot of folks try to explain that. If you take Super Bowls, Dan Marino, I think he was an elite quarterback. Jim Kelly, had been there – is it winning the Super Bowl? I don't know that. I think it's how you play and how you lead your team. Philip Rivers is an elite quarterback. It's how you go about your business, you're dealt with whatever you're dealt with at that position, you can't control that. That can determine some things."

Q: What's the biggest difference in Alex this year that he hasn't done before?

REID: "Some of it is what he's got around him. Some of those kids have grown up and he's had an opportunity to kind of train him in his way. That's a plus for him. Everybody from (Travis) Kelce to Tyreek (Hill), Chris (Conley), Albert (Wilson) these are all guys that are his guys and that's so important and it's showing up."

Q: Deshaun Watson has the makings of someone who can be good. What did you guys see in him during scouting quarterbacks?

REID: "He's a great player. What he did at Clemson was what we thought he would do here. But he's a tremendous football player. He's got some good players there around him and he's utilizing them. As good of a player as he is, he's an even better person. He's a great kid. He was a real pleasure to deal with before the draft."

Q: You mention Marcus (Peters) and said you can't go there. Is there anybody that can control an athlete when they do stuff like this?

REID: "I'm just going to leave it with the statement that I mentioned at the beginning."

Q: Was that in reference to the thing with the fan or the other things with the media?

REID: "Just with the situation."

Q: The (anthem situation) is lost in all of this now?

REID: "I'm just going off of what I mentioned."

Q: You've faced a lot of good defensive fronts, what's particularly challenging about the Texans front?

REID: "They've got good players. Those guys bring it. They're going to give you a challenge every snap. It'll be a great environment to play in and then you're definitely playing against good football players. That's what you like. That's the beauty of this thing. We wouldn't expect anything less."

 Q: You guys have pretty good depth, it seems like when you lose a guy you don't miss that much of a beat. Is that drafting? Is that scouting? Is that coaching? What do you attribute that too?

REID: "I think we're all in it together. I think it's the personnel department doing a great job, it's coaches coaching the guys up, it's the players and their willingness to learn. You can be a great player, but if you're not going to try what we're asking them to do, then normally that's a problem. I think it's everybody kind of working together on it."

Q: You talked yesterday about the options to replace (Laurent) Duvernay-Tardif. Have you settled on a guy for this week?

REID: "We haven't right now. We're just going to play it by ear here and see how things go the next couple of days. See how it all rolls."

Q: Did you think that (Eric) Fisher's performance was hampered a little bit on Monday because he was still recovering a little bit from that injury? How do you think he played versus how he might have played?

REID: "I think he actually played a pretty decent game. That's a pretty good front and I thought he did a pretty good job. He had some big time blocks for us when needed."

Q: Travis (Kelce) had mentioned he missed a couple of blocks on a few assignments. Is that something you find him actively working on?

REID: "If he mentioned it then that's something he was concerned about. He wants to be the best in the business, that's what he's striving to do. You expect all of the guys to feel that way. They're striving to be that. In particular the best you can be. I'm sure there are a couple there that he would like to have back, but he sure made a few nice plays too."

Q: How special is what Kareem Hunt has been able to do in his first four weeks, especially for an organization with such a rich history of running backs?

REID: "I like what he's doing. You're getting a complete back is what you're getting. He's not just a ball carrier. That's the thing that's important to a coach. Can he block and is he willing to block? Is he willing to get in the book and learn all of the pass routes and how they situate with the run game and where it can help the team either way? How the blocking schemes work so you're not getting negative yards. He does all of that. He's got a good teacher. I don't want to slight Eric Bieniemy in this whole big picture of things. The kid's willing to do the work. You don't know that until you get him here, exactly what you're going to have, but he's done all of that. He's very good that way."

Q: Did Bieniemy say anything to you about Kareem Hunt coming out of the combine?

REID: "He was a Kareem Hunt fan. As our personnel department was too."

Q: Does that throw to Albert Wilson look better on tape than it did in person on Monday night?

REID: "That was a heck of a play on both sides. Both the catch and the throw. Albert's doing a nice job for us right now. He's really playing good football and he and Alex have a little thing going, a lot of trust.

Q: It looked a little bit like what (Patrick) Mahomes did in the preseason in that Tennessee game. Did you get a little shade of that?

REID: "Similar, yeah. It's good stuff. That's what it's all about."



Q: **Tyreek Hill said he has trust in you and you have trust in the wide receivers, is that true?

Smith:"No question. As an entire group, Tyreek included, I just think we have had a ton of work. We have come a long way. We have had efficient work all through OTAs, all through camp, all season and we communicate really well. I think just as an offense, especially the skill position guys, there has been an open line of communication. I think those guys are really, really mature. Especially those young guys. They see things well and they learn fast and will continue to do so."

Q:What are your thoughts on the play to Albert Wilson on the last drive?

Smith:"I think that looks easy. Albert made it look easy. I just think that play and that catch was really difficult in that moment. Every scramble play is completely different, no two are alike. You don't really get to practice that catch, when does that happen? On the run, running down the sideline to the sideline, kind of Willie Mays-ish, knowing he is going to get hit and has to get his feet in. There is a lot going on there. So just really impressive play in a big moment."

Q:Take us through that play from your standpoint?

Smith:"You're not thinking scramble, but all the sudden I got outside the pocket and just trying to make a good decision, whether it is run or pass. Albert made that easy. He made a nice adjustment. Those guys are all making adjustments on the fly and we were able to connect."

Q:When you are playing well, do you over throw them?

Smith:"I think for on offense it is just so much more timing. I think it is seeing things and seeing things well. All those little adjustments and leverage, all those things everybody is seeing clearly and on the same page. I think the difference is this is eleven guys working together against moving targets. It is not just yourself up there. All of us doing it together. So there are so many moving parts on the fly. But when my timing is on and everybody is seeing the same thing and reacting to it, that is when things are going well on offense."

Q: How are you able to develop with Kareem Hunt and Tyreek Hill being such young guys?

Smith:"I just think those guys aren't your typical rookie or young guys across the board. We have a lot of young guys that don't act like that and don't carry themselves like that. I think it is credit to those guys, the character they have and the way they carry themselves. I don't view them like that.

Q:Can you just talk about the challenge of Houston's defense?

Smith:"Good across the board, but certainly starts up front. They have one of the best D-lines in football. A couple of the most disruptive guys in football up there. They are good at the linebacker position, they are good in the secondary. Veteran, they are well coached, they play together and physical. Throw that together on the road with the noise, they are tough. We obviously have played them a lot, there is a lot of history. We know what we are getting into."

Q:Is Alex Smith an elite quarterback?

Smith:"That is for you guys to talk about. I've said this before, it comes down to winning games. There's a lot of different types of offenses and everybody is in different situations out there. It is your job to run your offense and help your team. There's a lot of different ways to do that. I really think that is the ultimate evaluation."

Q:Does it feel like a rivalry with Houston?

Smith:"Yeah, there is a lot of history. There is a lot of history between us. Anytime you have that, there will be that there. Both sides have come out on top, we have gotten the best of each other. They have always been really physical games and tough fought. I don't expect this to be any different."

Q:It always seems like you are checking each other for a tiebreaker.

Smith:"Yeah, that is the deal when you are in the same conference, all that stuff comes down to the line and could be potentially in play."

Q:What did you think about Marcus Peters getting into it with the fans?

Smith:"I honestly didn't know about that till 15 minutes ago. Certainly, I feel like that is never a win getting into it with fans. Home or away. Listen, it is an emotional game. We invest a lot. Marcus is no different than all of us and certainly you feel frustrated. In the end, of course, not a good thing. Not a win there to get into it with fans."

Q:What are some of the things you have heard from fans?

Smith:"I've heard a lot over the years. It is tough. There are some that make you laugh and some that makes it hard. It can really get you. I certainly know that feels like. I feel like anytime that you are firing back it isn't going to end up well. But you can learn from it. He is certainly not the first one to do that."

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