Kansas City coach Andy Reid and the Chiefs organization already knew who Creed Humphrey was. They had an extensive scouting report, multiple ringing endorsements and, of course, the requisite background checks on the Oklahoma center.
But then the Chiefs head coach heard something from the franchise’s newest offensive tackle — former Sooner Orlando Brown — and he was even more sold that the Chiefs needed to draft Humphrey.
“Orlando told us to go get Creed when he was here,” Reid said. “He goes, ‘There’s a good one at Oklahoma you need to take a peek at.’ We’d already had our eye on him, but it was neat for Orlando to put it out there to us that way.”
In trading with Baltimore for Brown and selecting Humphrey with the 63rd pick in the second round of the 2021 NFL Draft, Reid and the Chiefs are stocking up with former Sooners to protect franchise quarterback Patrick Mahomes.
“Oh, I’m so excited,” Humphrey said Friday night on a video press conference. “I’m really close with Orlando. he’s helped me a lot. He’s mentored me a lot in my time at OU. So to be able to be on a team with him, I’m really excited about getting to join such a great organization. I’m so excited. I can’t wait.”
Brown played at OU from 2014-2017. After redshirting in 2014, he was a three-year starter at tackle before declaring for the NFL Draft. He and Humphrey never played together on the field, as Humphrey redshirted as a freshman in 2017 before he also became a three-year starter.
But being in the same meeting room every day with Brown, both of them under Bill Bedenbaugh’s wing, they formed a lasting bond.
Under Bedenbaugh, both Brown and Humphrey were two-time Big 12 offensive linemen of the year. Now they’re both Chiefs, and Humphrey can continue learning from the ex-Baltimore Pro Bowler.
“Just the mentality that he has every day that he carries himself,” Humphrey said. “He’s a guy that’s gonna go in there and he’s gonna do the work that’s necessary to get him to the next level that he wants to be at.
“When I got to OU, that’s something I admired right away from when I met him, seeing him go in and work as hard as he can every single day, work hard in the weight room, during training, during position drills, whenever we were doing stuff on our own. Just seeing him do that, and seeing the mentality he has — you know, he’s such a mean player on the field, too. That’s something I’ve always admired about him and something I’ve tried to copy my game after.”
Mahomes was sacked 24 times during the 2020 season, which ranked fifth-best in the NFL. But he was pressured often, hit frequently and even suffered a turf toe injury late in the season that hampered him. Poor pass protection ultimately manifested in the Super Bowl, when the Buccaneers sacked him three times, hit him eight times and pressured him a Super Bowl record 29 times.
Rebuilding a depleted and limited offensive line to keep Mahomes safe was Job 1 for the Chiefs, and Humphrey is eager for the opportunity to block for a former NFL and Super Bowl MVP.
“I’ve had the chance to play with some good quarterbacks at OU, and it’s a big help for me,” he said of NFL starters Kyler Murray and Jalen Hurts. “Just their leadership skills and everything like that, it’s helped me a lot throughout my career. Getting to play with a player like Patrick Mahomes, it’s so exciting because he’s so talented. He’s such a good player, he can change the dynamic of a whole game. So I can’t wait to get up there and start working with the team.”