In Week 4, the Kansas City Chiefs came to Heinz Field to play the Pittsburgh Steelers in prime time. It was Le’Veon Bell’s first game back from his 3-game suspension, and the Steelers blew the Chiefs’ doors off — literally.
The 43-14 outcome of that game truly doesn’t show just how lopsided the game was from start to finish. Nonetheless, these two teams will square off in the AFC Divisional round of the playoffs, and a lot has changed since their previous meeting.
First, and possibly foremost, the game will not be played in Pittsburgh, but Arrowhead Stadium. The place will be rocking, and the Steelers will have a tall task ahead of them going into enemy territory trying to punch their ticket to the AFC Championship game.
There are more differences though, and for the Chiefs, they are good differences. Jeremy Maclin seems to be healthy, but the biggest factor will be the return of pass rusher Justin Houston. The man who has tormented Ben Roethlisberger in the past, will likely be back on the field for the upcoming game.
Chiefs head coach Andy Reid spoke to the media about the upcoming matchup, Le’Veon Bell, the Steelers’ blitzes and more. Check out what Reid had to say about the upcoming playoff game.
On Le’Veon Bell
Q: What’s the best way to contain Le’Veon Bell?
REID: “That’s probably what most defensive coordinators and coaches have been asked. He’s a good player. He has a unique style about him – that delay to get to the line of scrimmage. It’s been effective for him. He’s really the only one that does it, so it’s unique. The obvious thing is you have to contain him and take care of your gaps, for sure.”
Q: Is he the most patient runner that you’ve seen?
REID: “Yeah, the most patient that I’ve ever seen. That’s a unique style. One that he’s kind of created.”
Takeaways from the Wild Card game
Q: You watched the game yesterday and what did you think watching it all unfold?
REID: “I thought they played well. Good football team. I’m not going to slight the Dolphins either. The Dolphins had a good game against them in Miami, and Pittsburgh came back and had a nice game plan in place. They’d probably be the first ones to tell you that you have to take care of the ball, you have to block and tackle well and you have to play well. They’re a good football team.”
On Playing a team twice
Q: Do you like the idea of facing a team that you already played this season?
REID: “Listen, I don’t mind it. It’s part of it. You kind of have that in your division. We have some pretty good teams in the AFC West, so we’ve been presented with that challenge just like Pittsburgh has been presented with that challenge in their division. I like the challenge of playing against a good football team – that’s what I like. I get excited about that.”
Preparing for the Pittsburgh Blitz
Q: How do you try and prepare Alex Smith for all of Pittsburgh’s defensive disguises?
REID: “Well, you know, every team has that. So, that’s part of this game, and then, you get yourself ready for their package. It’s complicated, but not as complicated as you might think it is from the outside. They have to keep it somewhat coordinated there, so they can function at the level that they function at and at that pace. They don’t dilute it. When a team is a blitz oriented team, everybody thinks that they blitz every down. The good blitzing teams normally pick and choose when they do it. They normally have a small package, and they study your protections and design it up to go there.”
Playoff game at Arrowhead
Q: What kind of impact could the fans legitimately have in this game?
REID: “I love bringing teams in here. It was rockin’ and rollin’ in that New England game when they set the decibel record on fire. The crowd was shaking and I can’t wait for this one. They’ll be here and they’ll do their part. It’s important that we focus and do our part. They [the fans] will show up no matter what. Whether it’s rain or snow it doesn’t matter -- they’ll be there.”
The Steelers and Chiefs will play Sunday at Arrowhead Stadium in Kansas City with a 1 p.m. ET kickoff. Stay tuned to BTSC for the latest news and notes on the AFC Divisional Playoff game.