Read what Patrick Mahomes and Andy Reid said from Chiefs Training Camp on Tuesday, July 18.
HEAD COACH ANDY REID
OPENING STATEMENT: “Alright welcome back, we’re looking forward to getting this thing started. Got a good group of guys coming in, we’ll be about one deep (for the next few days) so are going to have to work the rotation as we go with the camp, but it’ll be a good one for us to get these young guys some reps, looking forward to that. Once the vets get in really, you’ll probably see them up here today, Turk (Tershawn Wharton) will be starting off on PUP and we’ll just make a decision with (Isiah) Pacheco as we go forward, but those are really the only two that would be on the list as of right now. Other than that, we’re ready to giddy up and go and I’ll throw it out to you guys.”
Q: Last year you started thinking very early about how Patrick (Mahomes) was driving everything in terms of leadership and sort of the fire of it all, what have you seen this offseason?
REID: “Really during OTA’s you saw that, he’s not going to change that role, he’s going to continue to be one of the leaders of the team. You saw that with (Travis) Kelce, you know I had Chris Jones in here somewhere as things go on, he’ll be another one that helps step things up. We’ve got a variety of young guys, they’ve got great personalities and I’m expecting them to continue to grow in that area, too.”
Q: Where’s the room for growth with Patrick (Mahomes)? Obviously, it’s there somewhere, how do you really focus on that?
REID: “Well listen, with quarterbacks the work is never done. As I’ve mentioned before, it’s like being a farmer, you just keep on cranking. We’re always trying to give him new challenges with things, and he loves that, he loves to attack those type of things so that’s where it’s at. But you know what, there’s always things to work on, fundamentally there’s always things to work on. He spends a tremendous amount of time on that and puts a lot of effort into it and so then obviously the new plays.”
Q: Do you anticipate Chris Jones being here on the first day?
REID: “I don’t know that, we’ll just have to see how that goes. I mean there’s communication going on so that’s the important part and we’ll just have to see.”
Q: Patrick Mahomes mentioned that camp is different than the offseason workouts. With the rookies, have they really got the taste yet of what its like to be in the NFL and to be joining a team where the expectations are this high?
REID: “I think they’ll feel that a little bit more now. I think you’re a little bit guarded just by the rules for your OTA’s but it’s a good foundation to build, but this here, this tests you both mentally and physically when you have to go through a training camp and then they’ve got to deal with you guys every day. You know it’s just different. There are a lot of eyes on them, all the fans out there, a lot of eyes, so it’s different. There’s a different intensity level, plus you are getting ready for the season and you are building that foundation for the season.”
Q: if you say that being a quarterback is like being on a farm, from your world, when do you start thinking about training camp before you show up?
REID: “Listen, I take my work with me. I’ll spend a couple hours a day working on things, I enjoy doing that, you know some people read novels, I look at plays.”
Q: When you know something that maybe nobody else in the organization knows or when you stumble upon something that sparks your interest, what’s the feeling like knowing that eventually you are going to reveal to everyone what you figured out?
REID: “There’s not a lot of that that goes on, I try to keep open communication with my guys, and I don’t throw a lot of surprises out there for them, but this will be challenging. We try to create that every year, it always ends up being created in a new way, so we’ll just see how that goes.”
Q: You talk about challenges year in and year out. What keeps you motivated, obviously coming off a Super Bowl win, but what keeps you motivated to keep pressing on?
REID: “Visiting with you guys. I love the game, we got a good football team. I love the organization, being up here at Missouri Western State University. And the way people treat us up here is phenomenal. So all of those things I look forward to and enjoy doing.”
Q: Have you watched the Quarterback series on Netflix as it’s been presented at the end here?
REID: “I haven’t, I went through it with (Executive Vice President of Communications) Ted (Crews) before it was out, when we were going through the process. I had a pretty good idea of what was going on and it sounds like, you know my wife watched it, so sounds like it’s a pretty good show. I’m happy, it’s good for the NFL. It’s great for people to know what the quarterbacks go through.”
Q: On the process of deciding what information was shown in the Quarterback series.
REID: “Yeah, Pat’s (Mahomes) got a good feel for that, too. And likewise, (Executive Vice President of Communications) Ted (Crews). Ted had probably the biggest part in all of it, having to go every inch of it. But listen, there are things that you don’t want out there. I mean the best you possibly can, it’s hard in today’s world with all the technology, but there’s some things you’d like to keep in-house, particularly the way we teach things. And so that’s what we tried to do with that. To a point, we shared a few things, too.”
Q: You mentioned Isiah Pacheco a minute ago. Longer term, is there any concern that he may not be ready for the regular season, or do you feel like you have enough time?
REID: “You know Adam (Teicher), I think we’ll have enough time. Let’s see how this all goes. Curious to talk to him, I haven’t seen him yet, and likewise (Vice President of Sports Medicine and Performance) Rick (Burkholder) is going to talk to him.”
Q: How big are the next three days for the rookies, pinpointing Rashee Rice. What can he accomplish and learn to prepare him for when the full practice starts on Sunday?
REID: “I think it’s great for the young guys. I think it’s good for the older guys just to get tuned up, they know what it takes to get themselves ready for the season. This is a way to knock a little rust off, but for the young guys I think it’s even more beneficial. And it’s also beneficial for the coaches to see the young guys and see what they can do and the progress they’re making throughout the three games. So, we’ll just see how that rolls. I like having some form of preseason games, I just think that ends up getting you started for the season, kind of smooths out some things.”
Q: On if any adjustments were made during the shortened offseason due to Super Bowl celebrations and camp starting earlier than in years past.
REID: “I think everybody’s kind of ready to get going. Just turn the page, it’s over, all that stuff’s over. And we’re moving forward. I think the camp takes care of the rest of that.”
Q: What lessons did you learn from winning the Super Bowl and then going back and losing the next year?
REID: “You have to maintain your edge all the way through the season. You don’t take anything for granted. So, the guys that have been through that experience know that. And you gotta have the ball flip the right way for you. There’s so much parity in this league, there’s nothing that’s granted to you. You have to earn it, and there’s got to be certain things that just happen for you in the right direction. And then you’d have a chance to do something like that, but to do that you’ve got to go with this one day at a time approach. And you’ve got to be intense through those days that you’re given an opportunity to get better with.”
Q: How much do you rely on guys like Patrick Mahomes and Travis Kelce to set that environment?
REID: “Yeah, I love their attitude, that’s infectious. There’s a number of guys that do that, but those two, they’ve got eyes on them. And the way they go about their business is that they want to be great every day and do the best they can do every day. And they understand that through the tough parts of this, that it pays off for you down the road.”
Q: It’s well understood that you and Patrick Mahomes have had a wavelength since you’ve met. How much closer are you and Patrick to a shared vision of everything at this stage and is there even room for that to grow?
REID: “I mean, I think time does that to you enough. He knows, he’s got a great feel for things, and he knows what we’re all about and what I want, and I know what he wants. And we just go about it and makes sure we get everything taken care of.”
Chiefs Player Quotes
July 18, 2023
QB PATRICK MAHOMES
Q: How would you describe the theme of this camp and what are you hoping the rest of the guys get out of this experience?
MAHOMES: “I think the theme this year is how can we keep building. Obviously, we won the Super Bowl last year and it was amazing, but we still have a lot of young guys. We want to continue to get better and better. You look around the AFC, everyone’s gotten better. So, you want to continue to build and build and not be satisfied with what we did last year and see if we can take that next step.”
Q: What’s your advice to the rookies that are coming in for their first camp?
MAHOMES: “I told those guys ‘make sure you’re ready for it.’ I mean obviously St. Joe’s is an amazing spot to have camp, and we come out here and have a lot of fun, but you have to be ready to work. I told them, if you can get through Andy Reid’s training camp, then you’re going to be able to get through an NFL season. I think they must have that mindset, and they got a taste of it during OTA’s and minicamp. But they’re really going to see what it’s like during training camp and they know that if they do it the right way, they have as good of a chance as anybody to win the Super Bowl.”
Q: Do you think Coach Reid has a new way of challenging you this camp?
MAHOMES: “100%. He has a new way to challenge me it seems like every day. I always feel like I have kind of mastered the offense or feel like I know what he’s always thinking, and then he’ll throw a little curveball for me. I think that’s what makes him such a great coach, he continues to challenge everybody, not just me. You can ask Travis, Chris Jones, all of these guys, they’d think the same thing because he doesn’t let you be satisfied with where you are at.”
Q: Your last game you were playing through a very significant injury, what’s the status of your ankle now?
MAHOMES: “It feels great. I think even going into OTAs I was still a little timid about running, cutting, and doing stuff like that. But when I got closer to mini camp and the later OTA stage, I got that confidence back in my ankle. I’m sure I’m not going to be running a lot right now, but we’ll be testing it, especially in these half gassers. I’ll make sure it’s ready to go and I think I’m in a good spot with it.”
Q: You’ve experienced winning a Super Bowl and losing a Super Bowl, do you feel like you’ve seen it all?
MAHOMES: “He said I struggled (laughter). I think I’ve learned a lot. I’ve learned a lot from those struggles, and I’ve learned a lot from the success that I’ve had. I just continue to try to build, like I said, this is going to be no easier. The AFC is great, our division is great as it usually is, and I have to continue to take that next step because there’s guys that are continuing to build and trying to get to the level that we have played at as the Kansas City Chiefs. I understand that it’s a continued build, I feel like I still have a lot of places to improve and I’m going to continue to do that.”
Q: What are your thoughts on getting back to the Super Bowl this year?
MAHOMES: “I’m always confident that we have a chance to get to the Super Bowl. I understand it’s a process, I understand it’s not easy. I’m going to continue to build myself and then help our team get better and better. We have a lot of motivated guys, and I think you’ve seen from our culture that we want to continue to build this thing. We have a special group that can carry out a legacy and I think we have the right guys, so now let’s just go out there and do it.”
Q: What is your reaction to the Netflix Special: Quarterback?
MAHOMES: “I think it has had a great reaction. Being #1 on Netflix in the US is awesome. I mean that’s what you hope for, but obviously to get that is amazing. I got to watch a lot of my part but to see the other parts as well and see how the other guys went about it – (Minnesota Vikings QB) Kirk (Cousins) and (Atlanta Falcons QB) Marcus (Mariota) – it was truly awesome to be at the premiere with those guys and see the reactions from everybody. Everything that has been said has been positive. I told y’all there’s a lot of cussing from me, I tried to cut out as much as possible, but I get on that football field and let a few words go that I don’t usually.”
Q: What is something that you absolutely must have at camp?
MAHOMES: “The mattress pad obviously is the biggest one, you want to make sure you’re comfortable. I bring my own pillow, other than that, just have to bring my notepad and then let’s get it rolling. Then, I try to find one little way to prank Travis Kelce ever year.” (laughter)
Q: Where do you find motivation this year?
MAHOMES: “Yeah I mean there hasn’t been a team to go back-to-back since the Patriots in I think ’03-’04. So, everybody’s motivated by that. You should be motivated every year in the league it shouldn’t matter what last year was, you should be motivated to do it again. When you have that parade, when you go through the offseason that I’ve been through you want to do it again. You only get those opportunities by winning the Super Bowl. So for us we want to make sure that we can build up and try to win that Super Bowl again because that moment, that feeling is something you just want to grab every single time you get the opportunity to.”
Q: Do you feel like it’s your job here in camp to engrain that in the team?
MAHOMES: “Yeah, it’s extremely important to get here and to be here and to get that work ethic every single day. Luckily we have a lot of those guys coming back – last year I was trying to tell those guys ‘hey we need to go through this today, I know it’s tough, I know it’s not something we wanna do, but you have to do it if you want to win that Super Bowl.’ Well the guys know that now for the most part, obviously, there are some new players, but guys know kind of what it takes so now it’s let’s do that together, let’s go out there and have that motivation every day to get better. That’s something that Coach Reid preaches and I’m glad that we have that experience at least to know why we’re here and why we’re trying to be great all together.”
Q: Is it difficult to get excited about coming to camp and leaving behind your family and your life?
MAHOMES: “I think that’s the biggest thing that’s changed for me is just getting away from the kids. I think whenever it was so easy for Brittany to come back and forth and being every day at camp whereas it’s going to be a lot tougher with the two babies. I remember Sterling was waving out the window today, and I’m like ‘man, dude that’s tough.” She knows what’s going on a little more and that was kind of the toughest thing. It’s not the get here, that’s fun to me, but to have those long stretches where I’m not seeing my daughter and my son that’s definitely the toughest part about it.”
Q: On what the offseason was like celebrating the Super Bowl going to events all over
MAHOMES: “It was really cool. Winning the Super Bowl last time, COVID kind of ruined that Super Bowl celebration for us, stopped it kind of short. So, to be able to go through the whole process of it I understand why Tom (Brady) won a lot of them because it’s an amazing process and you want to make sure you can enjoy that with your teammates. I know a lot of guys were bouncing around everywhere as well and that gives you all the motivation you need to go out there and do it all again.”
Q: How involved was Head Coach Andy Reid in determining what stuff could and could not go into the Netflix show ‘Quarterback’?
MAHOMES: “I know it was a long process for me just trying to get those little tidbits and those words that translate – because you change a lot of that stuff so you can kind of get away with some of the play calls and stuff like that. But there is some stuff that I already know going into this year we were going to keep, so I was trying to get that out as much as possible. I’m sure (Chiefs Executive Vice President of Communications) Ted (Crews) has a better experience of going to Coach (Reid) and trying to get some of that stuff in. But Coach Reid was really good about it. He let us put some stuff in I don’t think he normally would because he knew it was a great project and he knew we were doing it that right way. I think having that trust with (Hall of fame Quarterback and show executive producer) Peyton (Manning) definitely helped. And they did it the right way. They saw the raw emotion of playing football. You saw what it was like playing quarterback but also to be a husband and a father and how you have to balance that time. You saw it from three different perspectives, and I thought it was a great way to do that and I hope all y’all enjoyed it.”
Q: Is there anything you can learn from the last time you tried to win back-to-back Super Bowls that you can apply to try and successfully do it this time?
MAHOMES: “I don’t think we laid off the little things but just having that consistent effort every single week. Look at us last time after we won the first Super Bowl, we really were like 14-1 we sat the last game went to the playoffs and ended up losing in the Super Bowl. You get in that mode especially when you’re winning a lot of games where you – I don’t want to say coast – but you kind of [think] ‘this is what we do, let’s just go out, practice this way, and then win a game.’ Whereas this time I think I’m going to try to really push and motivate guys to try to continue to try and get better. Even though we’re winning football games let’s not be satisfied with just winning, let’s be satisfied with finding ways to get better every single week. And so, whenever you get to that opportunity you don’t let is squander you really take advantage of it. It’s hard. I think it’s going to be the hardest it’s ever been. I’ve said it a lot, you look at the AFC, almost every team you can see a path for them getting to the playoffs. And I know you say that every year, but I think this year it’s really real. We know week in and week out it’s going to be a challenge for us, let’s get better and try to win as many football games as possible and put ourselves in that position.”