Andy Reid: I’ve got to find the next Len Dawson

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New Chiefs coach Andy Reid was formally introduced in Kansas City today, and it didn’t take long for him to be asked about finding a quarterback.

Reid didn’t offer any specific opinions about the quarterbacks currently on the Chiefs’ roster — Matt Cassel, Brady Quinn and Ricky Stanzi — but he did acknowledge that the team needs to have a franchise quarterback. Reid referenced former Chiefs quarterback Len Dawson, the Hall of Famer who played for the franchise from 1962 to 1975 and was the MVP of Super Bowl IV.

“I have looked at the roster and there are some good football players on this football team,” Reid said. “The quarterback position, I’m going to dig in and look at that and we’ll build that thing. We’ll see how that whole thing builds out. I need to spend some time working at it, though. I’ve got to find that next Len Dawson, doggone it. It might be right here, it might not.”

Realistically, the next Len Dawson is probably not currently in Kansas City: Cassel, Quinn and Stanzi haven’t exactly shown Hall of Fame potential. So the big question for Reid is whether the Chiefs can find a franchise quarterback in free agency or in this year’s draft, where Kansas City owns the first overall pick.

“We’ve been blessed with the No. 1 pick in the draft,” Reid said. “You want to make sure you do the right thing and pick the right guy for that. Not necessarily a quarterback — it doesn’t have to be a quarterback. It has to be the right thing. You don’t want to force anything at that point. People that do that get themselves in trouble.”

Reid would surely prefer not to play musical chairs at quarterback in Kansas City the way he did at the end of his tenure in Philadelphia, when he went from Donovan McNabb to Kevin Kolb to Michael Vick to Nick Foles. But there may not be a “next Len Dawson” available for Reid in Kansas City.

107 responses to “Andy Reid: I’ve got to find the next Len Dawson

  1. Matt Flynn or Kirk Cousins might be a better option than any QB available in the draft… trade anyone?

  2. McNabb i coming to KC baby! lol the chefs are screwed but KC BBQ is licking their chops at the money to be made here.

  3. Dwayne Bowe for Matt Flynn. And then trade #1 for more draft picks, and choose a QB later in 1st Round, or in 2nd Round…hope to find a good young QB but have Flynn as a safety net. Same thing the Seahawks did.

  4. huh? who is Len Dawson?

    j/k… but maybe he should be looking for a modern QB…. maybe that’s been his problem… looking for old style talent

  5. As a proud member of Raider Nation I sure wish Andy would have gone to Arizona. A good coach who seems to make q.b.’s play better than most.
    I see a much improved K.C. team in coming years.

  6. …and the Chiefs have to find the next Hank Stram. Just keep matriculatin’ the ball down the field boys.

  7. My guess is that he begins this search by thoroughly inspecting every BBQ establishment in Kansas City, then moving onto every bakery, pizzaria, steakhouse, and deli until he has left no stone unturned, and then possibly moving onto the NFL draft.

  8. Gonna matriculate the ball up the field with pass pass pass pass pass pass pass offense…..

  9. The Chiefs are not that blessed to have the first overall pick. Apparently there’s not a QB worthy of a that pick, and hardly there will be a market to trade down.

  10. praetorian12 says:
    Jan 7, 2013 2:38 PM
    Matt Flynn or Kirk Cousins might be a better option than any QB available in the draft… trade anyone?


    Don’t you think there’s a reason why Pete Carroll decided to go with a rookie 5’10” Russell Wilson over a veteran 6’2″ Matt Flynn? I used to be of the opinion that the Seahawks could use Flynn as trade bait since they’re sticking with Wilson, but I’m starting to wonder if Flynn had a couple good games filling in under center for Green Bay. I have a feeling Matt Flynn is kinda like Matt Cassel – a team sells high on him based off a couple good games.

    As for Cousins, he’s virtually the same case as Flynn, except he’s a rookie with barely a handful of passes under his belt. I doubt any team needing a quarterback would pay that much for him.

  11. As a Niner, it pains me to actually say this, but Alex Smith would make a lot of sense for Reid. In The Bay, it will be Scott and Colin going forward – and the Niners will draft another CK7-type in this draft somewhere around the 5 or 6th round.

  12. Ahhhh yes, the “Andy is overweight and I’m going to be clever and post about it” guys are out in full force. Please come up with some new material, if I have to read one more thoroughly original “KC BBQ” joke, I’m going to puke.

  13. He shouldn’t forget the defense in all this. Len Dawson probably never would have had a SB championship if it wasn’t for the all-pros on defense. Bobby Bell, Buck Buchanan and Willie Lanier to name a few. There was also a hall of fame kicker named Jan Stenerud. Just having another Len Dawson won’t get it, but it would be a good start. Another running back like Mike Garret would be good too as would a receiver like Otis Taylor…

    Andy’s got a lot of work to do…

  14. They have a guy on their practice squad named Alex Tanney. You probably remember him as the trick shot quarterback from Sportsnation. He played at a local D-3 here in Illinois. Dude is the real deal and should have gotten a look this year. He is worth calling up to put in that 3 spot over Stanzi. Plenty of upside!

  15. Geno Smith will be the #1 overall pick. And with AR’s coaching he will become the franchise QB the Chiefs have been longing for.

  16. Love the guy (Smash Scott) whose trying to trade a Free Agent to any team in the NFL. Classic! As a Bills fan, can I trade Jim Kelly for Peyton Manning? Or better yet, the steal of the century, OJ Simpson for Adrian Peterson. Just because there isn’t a QB valued at #1 doesn’t mean you pass on a guy you may be in love with and hope to snag him later. Rookie wage scale is a thing of beauty for years like these. This team is probably a QB away from competeing, and you can even let Bowe walk, there are playmakers at WO all over the place this year.

  17. Even if this was just the usual 1st media conference schpeel, I like that he’s setting the bar high.

    I’ve been a Chiefs fan since the early 90’s and it’s been painful to watch them try to win over and over again with the 12th-15th best QB in the league from Steve DeBerg to a declining Dave Krieg to an almost finished Joe Montana to Steve Bono to Elvis Grbac to Pre-Oakland Rich Gannon to Trent Green to Damon Huard to Matt Cassel, all the while NEVER making even a half-hearted attempt to find a franchise QB in the draft. Some of those guys had solid years for KC, but they could never carry the team.

    This team has some great players, but they need to start over at QB. I wouldn’t mind them bringing in an Alex Smith or a Matt Flynn as a bridge but they NEED to take a QB early in the draft. Get over Todd Blackledge already and try again!

  18. If you think the Redskins are trading Cousins, especially after yesterday, you’re kidding yourself.

    As for Flynn, sure go ahead and trade a high round pick or a good player for him. Then draft a QB in the fourth round and watch Flynn lose another training camp battle.

  19. indyeagle says: Jan 7, 2013 3:09 PM

    Ahhhh yes, the “Andy is overweight and I’m going to be clever and post about it” guys are out in full force. Please come up with some new material, if I have to read one more thoroughly original “KC BBQ” joke, I’m going to puke.


    Damn it Andy, we told you not to eat that much BBQ or you would get nauseous.

  20. the browns have a phil dawson. pat shurmer made sure phil would be able to score the mostbpoints for my brownies

  21. I’d say Alex Smith is the top choice versus reaching in the draft. Everyone knows he doesn’t throw deep but at least he’s dependable, in a clock manager/check down kind of way, and he’s proven to be accurate on short and mid distance throws. Maybe Reid’s play calling and coaching will help make Smith feel more comfortable throwing down field.

    KC already had Cassell, you don’t want want to risk another backup failing by trading for Flynn, unless they can get him for cheap (Seattle probably doesn’t want to pay him starting salary for a backup anyways). Also, I doubt Washington will give up Cousins easily with what just happened with RGIII.

  22. lol…I cant wait until the end of the year to see KC fans reaction to his press conferences.

    I can probably tell you now the entire content of his press conference for week 17 in 2013.

  23. @indyeagle

    Maybe Andy Reid can locate Len in the fold of his 3rd chin.

    How was that one?

  24. Leave it to Andy to play to the new crowd and please the people with a clever quote like that…. I bet he looked up who Len Dawson was before he said that. You’ll see him play to the people for the first 5 or 6 weeks and then you’ll see exactly what the Eagles fans have seen for the past 13 and 1/2 years. Good luck Kansas City.

  25. Andy hires Heckert as personal director/GM, Heckert trades top pick to Cleveland for his boy Weeden. KC wins 3 games next year!

  26. chiefs fans, are you really that dumb to believe the redskins are going to trade thier backup QB when they have a mobile QB starting who is more prone to getting hurt. And how in the world do you forget that you fell for this trap just a few years ago in Matt Cassel, a one year wonder who set you back years. But hey, let’s go get Matt Flynn.

  27. “I have looked through our roster and have not found the quarterback… where is my quarterback???” Andy Reid

  28. Just wait till you see that Andy draft another Danny Watkins with his first pick. At least he won’t trade up to get the player he wants. Maybe he can sign Juquan Jarrett…

  29. Oh man Andy Reid and BBQ = comic gold. Now I just have to finish my Baconator Frosty so I have enough energy to type this with my pudgy fingers. I hope no one beats me to this joke. Nah it’s so orginal there wont be twelve post of this exact joke before me.

  30. Just so you KC fans know Andy has a less than .400 record against teams with winning records and is 2-14 vs AFC play off teams. I am glad to have him in our division, he stinks. So overrated. Even his former players like J. Trotter and H. Douglas have come out and said he was out coached in those play off games that he was favored to win

  31. The next Len Dawson??!!! LOL Good job KC getting more oldfashioned than ever. Maybe Andy Reid should send some preliminary telegrams of interest to the top QBs to ask for a personal sitdown. Not off to a good start with style and positional need focus and attitude.

    Sounds like a real mess is exploding in KC, oh boy.

  32. It’s gonna RBI funny seeing him on the sidelines in red. He’s gonna resemble a big Mr. Koolaide

  33. Good luck, Andy. At least you re out of that cesspool they call Philly.

    Trade for Romo So he can escape that cesspool they call Dallas and all those Dallas fans can see what the real problem is in Dallas.

  34. I love all the “talent” in KC comments… hear this from the talking heads…..all the “talent” they have there. Doesn’t every team have at least a few good players??

    KC has won an average of 5 games a year since 2008, and finished with the worst record in the AFC 3 of the last 5 years. This is talent? I don’t care if your QB is Trent Dilfer, if you had all this “talent,” shouldn’t you win some games??

  35. Keep in mind that Dawson was a retread, having failed to make it in the pre-merger NFL. He was considered a journeyman, then found his niche with the Texans/Chiefs.

    I’m not saying that Reid will strike gold (or red and gold) with a guy who’s failed elsewhere, only that the right guy may already be out there somewhere. The certainty in my mind is that it’s not Cassel or Quinn.

  36. Smashscott. Bowe for flynn? Are you high? Flynn has not done anything to prove worthy of a franchise qb. And what would be the point of having flynn if he has no one to throw to.

  37. “…..maybe if the Chiefs could find the next Vince Lombardi…”
    Too late, he’s already working in New England (and I don’t mean coaching the BC Eagles, lol!)

  38. I wish Andy Reid all the best in KC. He deserves it after putting up with the dysfunctional owner, players, and fans in Philly.

    Signed: Giants Fan

  39. ninjapleazee says:
    Jan 7, 2013 4:20 PM
    It’s gonna RBI funny seeing him on the sidelines in red. He’s gonna resemble a big Mr. Koolaide

    You must have missed our last coach on the sideline?

  40. y’all have seen Matt Flynn play ONE NFL game and you’re saying he is a franchise quarterback…. how!? he couldn’t even beat out that guy who is too short..

  41. Reid’s point about Dawson might even be deeper. Dawson couldn’t get ahead of Bobby Layne at the Steelers and Milt Plum at the Browns and really blossomed with the AFL giving him…and a ton of guys….a real shot. Reid’s the kind of guy to make Cassell or Quinn a comeback story.

    I remember Dawson shrugging off the gambling charge the week of SBIV and coming out and smoking the Vikings. To me that win was even more historically signicant than the Jets beating the Colts the year before because it proved it was no fluke to beat the NFL.

    Kudos to Clark Hunt for getting his man. With the Kellys dropping out, a lot of teams are going to be reaching and Hunt got a name.

  42. Reid sounds like he had his choice of where he wanted to go and he chooses the graveyard for NFL coaches. The first of many questionable decisions he will make in his short tenure in KC. Must have been the BBQ that sold him…

  43. Just so you KC fans know Andy has a less than .400 record against teams with winning records and is 2-14 vs AFC play off teams.

    Then I suppose it’s good that he gets to play the Raiders twice a year now isn’t it.

    I’m still waiting to see who the GM & Coaching staff is/are before I get excited for disgusted about this hire.

  44. With the cheap nobodies the Eagles are looking at for head coach the Chiefs will win another Super Bowl before the Eagles will.

  45. Hopefully you find the good Len Dawson, and not the one who had 7 fumbles in a game, because you already had that one, his name was Mike Vick.

  46. New Chiefs coach Andy Reid was formally introduced in Kansas City today
    With that, a very disappointed Cardinal’s Committee finally departed Phoenix Airport in a Budget Rentals Ford Taurus, headed back to Glendale at a high rate of speed.

  47. southpaw2k says:Jan 7, 2013 3:05 PM
    I have a feeling Matt Flynn is kinda like Matt Cassel – a team sells high on him based off a couple good games.

    11-5 is a bit more than “a couple of good games”.

  48. Flynn is a likely candidate. But not Kirk Cousins. Rumors say RGIII has torn MCL/ACL and could miss all of next season. I don’t think the Redskins will deal Cousins knowing he is needed unless it’s a great offer. But he hasn’t earned any high draft pick returns yet.

  49. Cassel did well in NE…get the right QB coach and give him some bodies to throw to…he’ll do alright. Shore up the weak spots on defense and offensive line with the #1.

  50. I don’t know how much this will relate to his success.. but Andy had a tough couple of years with the passing of his son.. he’s coming into an organization who was hit hard by a tragedy this year.. who know’s, but there could be some inspired play to come from the chiefs

  51. Is Len Dawson how far back KC has to go to find a great QB? Sheeeesh….

    I know Montana played there, but really? They have to go all the way back to Len Dawson? Brutal.

  52. You’re not going to find the next Len Dawson in this draft and after Sundays game I doubt Cousins is going anywhere. Maybe a trade for Romo could be the answer cuz he’s fizzling out in Dallas!

  53. Let’s not forget that Reid made due with Doug Pederson for a year in Philly before things took off… Chiefs will be competitive this year, be wild card worthy in year two, and do very well in year three.

  54. look out KC – Andy’s big on un-retiring people – just ask Howard Mudd and Monte K.

    (it’s how he keeps that ’99 plan looking innovative)

  55. Get A. Smith and draft Tyler Wilson in the second and make sure we get a good OC. There is some talent on the roster but were not used properly and really suffered from atrocious play-calling

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