GLENDALE, Ariz. — Andy Reid, welcome to the Mount Rushmore of Coaches.
Yes, that Andy Reid. The butt of our jokes, in Philadelphia and Kansas City. Admit it: We all enjoy it when the joke’s on Andy Reid.
The video where he’s the giant Punt, Pass, & Kick kid. The criticisms about his clock management. The goofy Hawaiian shirts. The jokes he makes about his girth and his appetite; they don’t call him “Big Red” because of the size of his feet.
He takes it all in good fun. He seems to, anyway.
Now? Now, the joke’s on us.
The Chiefs won their second Super Bowl in four years, 38-35. The guy who can’t make halftime adjustments overcame a 10-point halftime deficit. The guy who can’t manage the the clock was like a maestro.
Did you hear the one about when he choked in Jacksonville at Super Bowl with a slow-play late drive that effectively ruined the Eagles chances to beat the Patriots? And the way his star quarterback was throwing up on the field? Hilarious.
Or how about the one in the AFC Championship game after the 2015 season, when approximately the same thing happened with his Chiefs against the same Patriots?
Since then, Reid has reached five conference championship games. He’s won two Super Bowls.
Only four coaches — Joe Gibbs, Bill Walsh, Chuck Noll, and Bill Belichick — have won more than two.
Andy Reid belongs on the coaching Mount Rushmore.
Yes. That Andy Reid.
Yeah. The joke’s on us.
Reid torched the No. 2 defense in the NFL. He torched them with a quarterback he created from whole cloth. That quarterback filleted the Eagles on one leg. He won after losing the most dangerous football player on Earth, Tyreek Hill, to a trade, and replacing him with … with JuJu Smith-Schuster.
And he might give it all up.
Reid told Fox Sports reporter Jay Glazer last week, “I’m not getting any younger. I still have a young quarterback. I have a decision I have to make after this game.”
Hard to imagine that. Asked after the game if he was contemplating quitting, he replied, “No.”
Reid will be 65 in March. He has 247 wins, fifth all-time, three behind Tom Landry. He won 130 of them over 14 seasons in Philadelphia, his first head-coaching stop. He has 21 playoff wins, second-all-time; Sunday night, he passed Landry. Belichick has 31.
It could happen.
The first person to bear-hug Reid was defensive coordinator Steve Spagnuolo, who’s worked for Reid for 12 years, the first eight in Philadelphia. Spags had to share Reid with Eric Bieniemy, Reid’s offensive coordinator for both Super Bowl wins. Then it was Tammy Time. Tammy Reid is Reid’s wife, the first lady of NFL coaches. Sunday night she was dressed in a sparkling black suit, a queen back on her throne, hugging her husband like he’d just come back from war as red and yellow confetti fell on the field at State Farm Stadium.
Leave this? You gotta be kidding.
This is what happens when greatness meets greatness.
Set in the Valley of the Sun, magnificent in its bleak beauty, a pedigreed team from the rich lands of the Midwest met an upstart team from the East Coast and proved, time and again, they are the best in football. And they likely will be this for years to come.
Led by the first two Black quarterback to meet in a Super Bowl, the Chiefs and MVP Patrick Mahomes squeaked past the Eagles and Jalen Hurts, the MVP runner-up. They’d each earned half of the 70 points on the board late in the fourth quarter, Mahomes with a bad wheel, Hurts with a bad wing.
They showed hearts of champions.
Hurts set up the tying touchdown with a 45-yard bomb that ground the strained ligament in his throwing shoulder into a slightly thinner strand, then took a hellacious hit on a two-point conversion run that must have blinded him with pain.
Minutes later, Mahomes scrambled 26 yards up the middle toward what he knew would be an ankle-addling end. That ankle, sprained three weeks before, nearly got twisted off just before halftime.
Again: Hearts of champions.
The run set up the field goal that split the uprights with 4 seconds left. It was a masterful performance by two superb coaches, Reid and second-year savant Nick Sirianni.
How well-coached were these players?
Rather than scoring a touchdown, running back Jerrick McKinnon slid to a knee at the 1-yard line with 1:36 to play. That forced the Eagles to use their final timeout and let the Chiefs burn all but 4 seconds.
And, with that, Reid made it to Rushmore.
Joke’s on us.