The serious expression beneath Andy Reid's bushy moustache finally started to curl up into a smile when the history of the Kansas City Chiefs and Raiders was broached this week.
There's nothing that gets an old coach's fires stoked like a good rivalry.
“I get it. I understand it,” Reid said. “These are special in the National Football League, these types of rivalries that get your juices flowing and get them flowing early.
“The black and silver,” he added, “if anybody is wearing it, be careful.”
Fair warning, especially with a group of fans trying to set a record for loudest sports stadium today. They picked the Raiders to try to hit the ear-splitting mark of 136.7 decibels set by Seahawks fans earlier this year precisely because they're such a heated rivalry.
The Chiefs and Raiders have been playing since the days of the old AFL, back when Lamar Hunt and Al Davis were in the ownership suites. The animosity hasn't dimmed in recent years as Oakland (2-3) rattled off six consecutive wins at Arrowhead Stadium.
“It's a great environment to play football in, a tough environment,” Raiders coach Dennis Allen said. “But I think our guys get excited about coming and playing a division rival in Kansas City, and Raiders-Chiefs, how does it get any better than that?”
The Raiders will be trying to continue their road dominance of Kansas City (5-0), which will be trying to continue a dream start to Reid's tenure in charge. They have the league's best scoring defense, they've been efficient on offense and they've been opportunistic on special teams. The result is that Kansas City has become the first franchise in NFL history to win its first five games after winning two or fewer the previous year.
Now, the Chiefs will try to get that Raiders bugaboo off their back.
“I just found out that we haven't won at home against Oakland since 2006,” said quarterback Alex Smith, traded to the Chiefs in the offseason. “I'd like to get that changed.”
Raiders vs. Chiefs
WHEN: Today, 10 a.m.
WHERE: Arrowhead Stadium, Kansas City, Mo.
TV: CBS (KPIZ, Ch. 5)
RADIO: KGMZ (95.7)