KANSAS CITY, Mo. – This coming Saturday’s meeting between the Chiefs and New England Patriots will not be the first time Andy Reid has gone head-to-head against Bill Belichick in the NFL postseason.
Reid’s Eagles played Belichick’s Patriots in Super Bowl XXXIX, with New England beating Philadelphia 24-21 in Jacksonville on Feb. 6, 2005.
It was the third of the four championships won by the Pats under Belichick. It was Reid’s only trip to the title game as a head coach.
“They are doing a phenomenal job,” Reid said of the Patriots. “Bill is a friend and he’s a heckuva football coach. Tom Brady is unbelievable. Both of them are future Hall of Famers. They’ve made history.
“We look forward to the challenge; that’s what this is all about.”
Belichick sees a challenge coming his way from the Chiefs.
“They pretty much dominated that game from the opening kickoff all the way through the fourth quarter,” Belichick told the New England media on Sunday. “Kansas City is a good football team. They’re well coached.
“I’d say yesterday’s game was a typical Kansas City game this season or over the last three quarters of the season – a lot of turnovers on defense, no turnovers on offense, capitalized on opponents’ mistakes and didn’t make any. They’ve won a lot of games pretty much doing that.”
The Chiefs and Patriots played each other last season, with Reid’s team grabbing a convincing 41-14 victory on Monday night. Belichick yanked Brady early in the fourth quarter when safety Husain Abdullah grabbed an interception and returned it 39 yards for a touchdown. That gave the Chiefs a 34-point lead with 10 minutes, 34 seconds to play.
That game was 16 months ago, and there is not much for the Chiefs to carry forward from that performance, especially given that this Saturday’s game will be played in Foxboro, not Kansas City.
“That was then and this is now,” said Reid. “We’ve got guys playing now that were watching that on TV. You just prepare for the team you’ll face in 2016.”
Belichick agreed that there has been too much water that’s flowed under the NFL bridge to put a lot of stock in what happened during the ’14 season. But he won’t ignore the game or its results.
“I think you look at it, there are things we can take from it, there are some things that I’d say are somewhat outdated just based on the players and personnel, the situation and that kind of thing,” said Belichick, who saw his team go 13-2 after losing to the Chiefs and the Patriots won Super Bowl XLIX, beating Seattle. “It has relevance, but we’re certainly going to have to prepare and coach the team a lot better than we did that night, so that’s what we’ll try to do.”
Kickoff is scheduled for 3:35 p.m. CT on Saturday at Gillette Stadium, where the Patriots are 13-3 in postseason games.
“What a great challenge and opportunity to play up there in Foxboro,” Reid said. “It’s a great atmosphere and there might be a little snow. It doesn’t get any better than that.”