Former NFL quarterback and current Fox analyst Mike Vick said plenty of interesting things during an 80-minute interview with Tyreek Hill on his It Needed To Be Said podcast. One thing Vick said merits further discussion.
Vick suggested that Chiefs coach Andy Reid could be the greatest coach of all time.
“I was actually thinking this year like, after Andy won the Super Bowl, he only got two, but he went to like four or five NFC Championship Games [and] every year [the Chiefs were] in the AFC Championship Game,” Vick said, via USA Today. “He might be the greatest coach of all time . You don’t have to win championships to be considered. You know, I understand [Bill] Belichick and [Tom] Brady and that whole dynamic. But Coach [Reid] did it in Philly, and then he did it in KC. I’m always shout out coach like I love that man to death, like for real literally I’d do anything for him.”
Reid is currently fifth on the all-time wins list with 247 regular-season victories. He has another 22 in the postseason. Belichick has 298 regular-season wins and 31 postseason victories.
But Belichick had Brady at quarterback for almost 19 seasons. Except for two starts by Bledsoe in 2001 (before he suffered the injury that opened the door for Brady), 15 in 2008 (after Brady suffered a torn ACL), and four in 2016 (during Brady’s #Deflategate suspension), it was all Brady from 2001 through 2019 — including every postseason game the Patriots played under Belichick. Since Brady left New England, Belichick has missed the playoffs twice in three years, and the Patriots lost by 30 to the Bills in their lone post-Brady playoff game.
Reid, who has been a head coach for every game of every season since 1999, has done it with a bunch of different quarterbacks starting games: Doug Pederson, Donovan McNabb, Koy Detmer, Mike McMahon, Jeff Garcia, AJ Feeley, Kevin Kolb, Vick, Vince Young, Nick Foles, Alex Smith, Chase Daniel, Nick Foles, Patrick Mahomes, Matt Moore, and Chad Henne.
Reid, unlike Belichick, is regarded as one of the greatest quarterback developers of all time. At one point during his tenure with the Eagles, he would draft quarterbacks low, turn them into great players, flip them for more than he’d given up to get them, and watch them become not nearly as good elsewhere as they had been under Reid. He also made one of the most savvy quarterback moves ever, pulling the plug on McNabb and promoting him to Washington just as McNabb’s skills were eroding.
Here’s the other important reality that shows how the gap has closed. In the four years since Belichick last won a postseason game, Reid has won two Super Bowls and gone to another one. And he still has Mahomes. And he will have Mahomes.
And Reid is six years younger than Belichick.
So, in six years (if Reid stays that long), how many more Super Bowl wins will he have? By then, the answer to Vick’s question could become obvious — especially if Belichick continues to spin his wheels without a true franchise quarterback.
In the ongoing conversation about Mahomes’s effort to catch Brady, Reid’s effort to catch Belichick is rarely mentioned. Unlike Mahomes, who needs five to catch Brady, Reid only needs four to catch Belichick.
And, again, Reid had Mahomes. Which makes a huge difference when it comes to coaches seeming to be great coaches.
As one coach recently remarked in a text exchange over the post-Brady struggles in New England, the chess match on game day becomes a lot each when one team is playing with pawns and the other is stacked with queens and rooks.
While Belichick’s team isn’t hardly a collection of pawns, Reid has the ultimate chess piece, and he’s still on the front end of his prime.