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The worst kept secret in the league is that Kansas City Chiefs head coach Andy Reid is a master offensive play designer. The variety of options at his disposal already has the team feared by every defensive coordinator around the league. As news broke about the Chiefs signing former All-Pro running back Le’Veon Bell, it was assumed that the combination of Reid, quarterback Patrick Mahomes and Bell would create endless possibilities.
The rumors that have swirled over Bell since his Pittsburgh Steelers hold out have been negative and didn’t get any better while being cut by the New York Jets last week. Bell’s reputation had some worried about how he might handle a shared backfield. Reid and Mahomes addressed their thoughts on Bell’s potential and fit with the team during Wednesday’s press conference with local beat reporters.
“Every week is going to be different. You play these different teams, and they have different ways of going about their business against you,” Reid told reporters. “But to have that flexibility is maybe the most important thing, and to have players that can do those things I think is important. So, Clyde (Edwards-Helaire), my hat goes off to him. He was phenomenal, and it doesn’t hurt to have a running mate or two, and we’re lucky to have a nice group of running backs now. Different flavors isn’t bad to throw at a defense, and I think when you see Le’Veon, you’re going to see how big he is—he’s a big man. So, that’s a different flavor than maybe what we have at the other spots. But somewhere, they’re all going to play, that’s just how it goes. But Clyde sure had a nice day, and he’s had a great year, and welcoming in another helping hand doesn’t hurt at all.”
Reid is confident with the game plan featuring both running backs as Kansas City looks to build on their amazing rushing performance in the Week 6 victory over the Buffalo Bills. Bell can fit into the current system and schemes with time to adjust to the new game plan while Edwards-Helaire is on a hot streak. As for questions regarding Bell’s character in the Chiefs’ locker room, star quarterback Mahomes spoke candidly on his chemistry fit moving forward.
“First off in the locker room, I mean we’re extremely excited,” Mahomes said. “If you’ve looked at how (Brett) Veach and Coach (Andy) Reid have kind of put this culture together, it’s about bringing in great players and binging competition. We’re excited for him to be here and be a part of the team, be a part of the culture of winning and being able to go out there every single week and keep getting better and better. He’s obviously a mismatch coming out of the backfield. The way he’s able to run routes, the way he’s able to split out and basically be another receiver out there, and he’s going to get a lot of matchups I don’t think he’s had recently with a lot of linebackers on him, and I’m sure he’s pretty excited about that.”
Mahomes has shown to be a locker room leader early in his career, and if he’s confident in Bell’s personality meshing with the team, that should alleviate all worries. It’s just another reminder that the Chiefs’ team culture has been among the best in the NFL and an underrated aspect of the recent success in Kansas City.