Over the course of two decades, and with a wide range of quarterbacks, Andy Reid has established himself as one of the NFL’s brightest offensive minds. It’s a big reason why his lack of playoff success and one previous Super Bowl appearance was so perplexing.
It took Reid 15 years to get back to the big game, and his team’s most unique play design from Sunday was likely the oldest.
Facing fourth-and-1 from the 49ers’ 5-yard line in the first quarter, the Chiefs lifted a play from the 1948 Rose Bowl between Michigan and USC.
“I probably shouldn’t be giving this away,” Chiefs offensive coordinator Eric Bieniemy revealed after Kansas City’s 31-20 win over the 49ers in Super Bowl LIV. “… It’s just a play that we’ve been working and wondering when we can polish it off.”
Three players initially lined up behind Patrick Mahomes, whose 360-degree turn prompted the other three to spin and reset in the backfield before Damien Williams received a direct snap and converted the fourth down with a 4-yard gain. The Chiefs took a 7-3 lead two plays later.
“My brother’s high school coach was actually in that game for USC, so I had a little bit of tape,” Reid said Monday. “We went back through and pulled that out. We actually have a whole package of it so you’ll have to wait until next year to see the rest. There’s some good stuff.”
It should be noted, Reid didn’t simply pull out the projector in the past two weeks. Michigan’s spin play was something the Chiefs have been practicing since May. They just weren’t sure if they’d use it.
“We’ve worked on that play since the first day of OTAs Phase II,” Mahomes said. “We had a whole package we were working on and we kept working on it every single week and kept working on it and executing it and doing it the right way, waiting for the perfect time to call it. When we were there and coach said it, I was like ‘It’s time, let’s do it.’
“You never know when those plays are going to get called, but you just keep working and try to perfect them every time you get an opportunity to.”
When the moment arrived, the Chiefs, and their coach, were ready.
This article has been reproduced in a new format and may be missing content or contain faulty links. Please use the Contact Us link in our site footer to report an issue.