Andy Reid has some enormous stones. On Sunday, with his team's Divisional Round game and the season on the line, the 62-year-old head coach shocked the NFL with the gutsiest play-call of the season.
The Kansas City Chiefs led the Cleveland Browns 22-17 with less than two minutes to go. With Patrick Mahomes out due to a head injury, the Chiefs were reeling a bit. Instead of running the ball a few times and punting it back to Cleveland, Reid stayed aggressive and it paid off.
We'll start a play before that call, as the Chiefs faced third and 14 from their own 35-yard line with two minutes left in the game. Backup quarterback Chad Henne was in for Mahomes, after the reigning Super Bowl MVP left to enter concussion protocols. Henne had been a mixed bag as his replacement up to that point. On that third down he stepped up though. He dropped back and saw nothing open down field, so he scrambled. The 35-year-old wound up gaining 13 yards and was half a yard short of the first down marker.
Facing 4th and one with 1:14 to go at his own 48-yard line, Reid left his offense on the field. The Chiefs lined up in shotgun formation and everyone in the building figured they were trying to draw the Cleveland Browns offsides, before calling timeout and punting. Instead, the Chiefs actually snapped the ball, Henne rolled to his right and fired off a quick pass to Tyreek Hill for a five-yard gain and a first down. Game over. The Chiefs are back in the AFC Championship Game.
Check the play out:
So to recap: with the game on the line, Reid opted to go shotgun on fourth and one from his own 48-yard line and called a pass play with his backup quarterback in the game. It was a stunning decision from one of the best offensive minds the NFL has ever seen.
Here are some fun facts about that sequence:
What this comes down to is that Reid believes in his players as much as any coach in the league. We've seen over the years that he has faith his guys will go out and win games, as opposed to not losing them. That play-call was the Chiefs going out and winning the game.
Give Reid credit for being creative and also trusting his players to go out and make a play. That could wind up being the call of the season.