It’s Been 25 Years Since Reid Won Over the Eagles in An Interview. His Framework for Winning Hasn’t Changed.

Next Sunday, Coach Andy Reid will step onto the field coaching a team in yet another Super Bowl as a sure-fire future Hall of Famer. Reid has amassed an impressive record of 258 regular season wins and 25 postseason wins, second only to Bill Belichick.

Big Red has a truly impressive head coaching record with both the Eagles and the Chiefs. He has coached in five Super Bowls, 10 AFC/NFC Championship Games, 14 AFC West/NFC East Division Titles, and has two Lombardi Trophies during his two-decades long career.

It was 1999 when Big Red, the Quarterbacks coach for the Green Bay Packers who once took a play from a Lambeau Field Janitor and used it in a game, overwhelmed Jeffrey Lurie and the Eagles during an interview for the Eagles Head Coaching job.

Reid had prepared and waited for his moment.

Photo Courtesy of Wiki Commons.

His blueprint was well planned. First the Eagles would select a Franchise quarterback. Selecting Ricky Williams (running back from Texas) with the first pick in the draft in 1999 was never in Reid’s plan. Instead, he took Donovan McNabb out of Syracuse to lead the Eagles. In 2017, he selected Patrick Mahomes to lead the Chiefs with the 10th pick in the Draft.

The second part of the plan called for the best defensive coordinator available. The Eagles found one in Jim Johnson in 1999 and the Chiefs found one in Steve Spagnuolo in 2013.

President Joe Biden greets Kansas City Chiefs owner Clark Hunt, Head Coach Andy Reid and players Patrick Mahomes and Travis Kelce in the Oval Office of the White House, Monday, June 5, 2023, prior to an event celebrating the team’s Superbowl LVII championship. (Official White House Photo by Adam Schultz)

The third portion was to weed out any players from prior regimes that did not fit Reid’s mold for a championship. With the Eagles and Chiefs, that was not difficult as the 1998 Eagles had been 3–13 and the 2012 Kansas City Chiefs were 2–14.

So what went wrong for Reid in Philadelphia?

NFC Championships — For years the Eagles could not make it over the NFC Championship Game. Inadequate wide receivers, and a few bad bounces and the Championship Game became a mountain that the Eagles could not climb until 2005.

Father Time — By the time that the Eagles went to the Super Bowl in 2005, much of Reid’s original early-2000s nucleus was already aging. It could be said that 2005 was the height of Reid’s Eagles. They would return to the NFC Championship Game in 2009 against the Cardinals but by that time, the core of the NFC’s best team since 1999 was aged.

Staff Changes — Defensive coordinator Jim Johnson, whose defenses sent blitz’s from every conceivable area on the field, passed away in 2009. In many ways, the Andy Reid Eagles never recovered. An excellent staff that was assembled by Reid in 1999 including Jim Johnson, John Harbaugh, and Steve Spagnuolo were gone.

When Andy Reid was let go by Jeffrey Lurie in 2012 after a failed post-Donovan McNabb reboot with Michael Vick had failed culminating in a 4–12 season, Reid kept his plan for the next destination. In Kansas City, Reid learned from his mistakes in Philadelphia as Kansas City has aggressively replenished its roster after Reid won his first Super Bowl with the Chiefs in 2019.

Will Reid’s plan allow him to continue to climb the all-time coaching win list while Kansas City wins its third Super Bowl?

We’ll find out next Sunday night.

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