Latter-day Saint Life

Andy Reid says his faith influences ‘everything’ about how he coaches the Kansas City Chiefs

Super Bowl LVIII - San Francisco 49ers v Kansas City Chiefs
Head coach Andy Reid of the Kansas City Chiefs speaks with the media after the team’s winning game at Super Bowl LVIII at Allegiant Stadium on February 11, 2024, in Las Vegas, Nevada.
Ethan Miller, Getty Images

Coach Andy Reid has led the Kansas City Chiefs to three victories in Super Bowl championship games. While many people are familiar with his accomplishments, they may not realize just how much his faith shapes how he coaches football. In fact, on a new episode of the All In podcast, Coach Reid said that “really everything” about his approach is influenced by his faith.

Coach Reid shared that he sets up meetings at the Chiefs “just like you have at church.” He organizes one-on-one meetings with the players, interviews with the head coaches, and team meetings, making sure everything is tightly outlined and scheduled.

“We get in, we get out, we learn, and we go forward,” he says. “And then we try to live … these principles as coaches and players.”

The football locker room or field isn’t always an environment that invites the Spirit, but Coach Reid feels one of the most important ways to manage worldly influences is to live what you believe.

“I try to lead by example there. And so … guys will watch their language around me. I’m hard on them about the music ’cause, you know, the music can be a little rough there. So, if you want to listen to it, you’re a grown man, put a headset on and listen to it with your headphones. … If you’re going to play it and for the team, play stuff that there’s no profanity in,” he says.

Coach Reid also shared that he aims to promote unity, encouraging staff and players to avoid getting into divisive topics at practices or in the locker room. He says:

“Right now, with so much stress in the world, and our teachings of our prophet about uniting, joining together, bringing … together different faiths and different races, let’s come together and do this in unison the best we can. So, we try to do that here. We say, try not to hit those key things that start … conflict.

“ … If somebody comes to you and asks you what your faith is, [go ahead and talk about it, but] let’s not hammer that home. Let’s not talk the politics and hammer that home. Let’s not get in a conflict. … Let’s handle ourselves the right way as a team where we can be together for eight months out of the year and have some continuity, some love, and teamwork.”

Early in his career, Coach Reid appreciated the mentorship of former Brigham Young University Coach LaVell Edwards, who taught him how to work well with people and maintain a calm demeanor and sense of humor—even in high-stress situations.

Coach Reid demonstrated this grace under pressure during a viral moment in the most recent Super Bowl when Chiefs tight end Travis Kelce aggressively confronted him on the sidelines, insisting that the coach put him back in the game. Soon after, Coach Reid said Travis hugged him and apologized.

“I don't hold that against him,” Coach Reid shares. “There’s a point where you just kind of calm things down, and you become the teacher. … One advantage of staying close to the gospel is that it’s not a pretend thing. This is how we’ve been trained to handle things the best [we] can in a Christlike manner.”

Coach Reid says that he considers Travis like one of his own children, and this sense of family camaraderie extends across the entire team. His wife, Tammy, whom he calls “the head coach of the head coach,” actively supports and unites the team—traveling to cheer on the players during away games.

“She’s kind of everybody’s mother,” he says. “She’s a great example to the coaches, wives, to the players’ wives, to the players. … They get to see that I have a good relationship with my spouse and I trust her.”

While Coach Reid is focused on helping players succeed on the field, he also cares about them as people. He believes it’s important to encourage them in their lives outside of football, allowing them to show their full personalities and grow into their best selves.

For example, he says he’s appreciated the chance to watch Patrick Mahomes seek improvement and growth—not only as a football player but also as a father and a husband: “[Patrick’s] always searching those things out and trying to see what he can do better in the areas of family and in football, so he’s a pleasure to be around.”

Coach Reid has also publicly supported Travis Kelce and Taylor Swift’s relationship, which has received extensive media attention. “[Travis] has been here as long as I’ve been here, and I’ve seen him grow,” he says. “For him to be happy in a relationship, I just think is a neat deal.”

The Chiefs coach has known Taylor longer than Travis, sharing that he met her and her father when he was coaching the Philadelphia Eagles. “Her mom and dad did a good job of raising her,” he says. “She’s humble, arguably the most famous woman in the world since the Queen has passed away, so for her to handle things the way she does, my hat goes off to her. And, listen, most of all, [she] and Travis love each other. So, I mean, who wants to disrupt that? … Those two are very happy together.”

In his own family, Coach Reid feels that the gospel has helped him maintain a strong relationship with Tammy, his children, and his grandchildren.

“When you read the Book of Mormon or the scriptures period, the people have had ups and downs, and people in leadership positions have had ups and downs. That’s part of life. … And so we bank on our faith to get us through that,” he says. “We try the best we can to lead by example, [and] leading by example means that you’re following Christ’s teachings. What a great example He was for us in all the trials and tribulations that He went through.”

At the end of the podcast episode, Coach Reid again expressed his gratitude for Jesus Christ and gospel truths.

“If we keep it simple to say our prayers and read our scriptures every day, things we’ve been taught since we were little shooters, then those simple things can help guide us through most situations that you come through in life.

“And if you feel like they’re not giving you the answers, you dig a little deeper—you’re probably gonna find the answer. And we’ve been blessed with that game plan to get us through our earth life. And so I bank on that a lot. And Jesus Christ is the main character in the scene. He’s a great person to learn from.”

To learn more about how Coach Andy Reid lives his faith, check out the full episode of the All In podcast, available in the player below or on your favorite streaming platform.

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