The Kansas City Chiefs are expected to keep Britt Reid, the team’s outside linebackers coach and son of head coach Andy Reid, home from Super Bowl LV while police in Missouri investigate his role in a possible drunk driving accident Thursday that police say left two young children injured, one critically.
That’s step one for the organization. And only step one.
The last place Britt Reid should be, and likely deserves to be, is coaching in the Super Bowl.
According to a police report, Reid, 35, acknowledged to authorities Thursday that he was drinking alcohol before driving on Interstate 435 around 9 p.m. near the Chiefs’ practice facility. Reid’s truck hit two cars, one that had pulled over after running out of gas and a second that stopped to assist the first.
Two children were injured in the collision, including a 5-year-old who is suffering from life-threatening injuries, a police report said.
Kansas City television station KSHB reported that police sought and were granted a search warrant to have Reid’s blood drawn from him at a local hospital. Police asserted they smelled alcohol on Reid’s breath and noticed his eyes were bloodshot. Reid told police that he had two or three drinks that night and was on prescription Adderall.
In 2007, Reid was sentenced to up to 23 months in prison in Pennsylvania for his role in a road rage incident that included driving under the influence of alcohol, possession of a controlled substance and the brandishing of a gun. He served five months. He has been with the Chiefs since 2013, when his father became the head coach. He previously worked under his father in Philadelphia.
“The organization has been made aware of a multi-vehicle accident involving outside linebackers coach Britt Reid,” the Chiefs said in a statement. “We are in the process of gathering information, and we will have no further comment at this time.”
Among the first things the Chiefs need to investigate is if Reid was drinking, where was he doing it prior to getting behind the wheel of the truck?
Due to strict NFL COVID protocols it would be newsworthy if a coach went to a bar, a restaurant or even a friend’s house to have some drinks. Any such contact could cause not only Britt Reid to miss the Super Bowl, but any other coach, player or staff member within the Chiefs’ organization who got anywhere near him.
So he probably wasn’t at a bar.
The place to start, of course, is the team facility, which sits adjacent to Arrowhead Stadium. The crash occurred near there. According to public records, Britt Reid resides at a home in Overland Park, Kansas, located about 30 miles away. I-435 is the obvious route to get there.
Presumably Reid, like any NFL coach on any game week, let alone Super Bowl game week, was putting in long hours in preparation. Like many work environments, it’s not unusual for alcohol to be in team facilities.
If Reid came straight from work, then the bigger question for the Chiefs isn’t which coaches are on the team flight Saturday, but what exactly is going on inside their facility.
It shouldn’t take too long to find out. NFL teams and their buildings are heavy on security and video monitoring. It’s also a busy place these days. The team needs to be upfront and transparent, immediately.
If the Chiefs think the timing as they depart in search of consecutive Super Bowls is inconvenient, just know the injured 4- and 5-year-old had no such choice to delay bad news. It wasn’t them who slammed into anyone. It wasn’t them who caused police to seek a search warrant for Reid’s blood-alcohol level.
This is a sad story that hopefully doesn’t become an extremely tragic story. The backdrop of the Super Bowl and a coach with a famous last name is what causes the headlines, but the core issues are societal.
The Chiefs, though, like any employer, have an obligation to know and control what is happening in their building.
And then they have an obligation to be clear about what they found, Super Bowl news cycle or not.
Keeping Britt Reid far from Tampa is just the start. Finding out, and then sharing, everything that happened Thursday and anyone else involved, is far more important right now.
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