Former Ravens wide receiver Jeremy Maclin has nothing but good things to say about Andy Reid — whom he played under in Philadelphia and Kansas City — after the Chiefs’ 31-20 win against the San Francisco 49ers in Super Bowl LIV Feb. 2.
Reid coached Maclin with the Eagles from 2009 until the coach’s firing and departure to Kansas City after the 2012 season. The two met up again in 2015 when the Chiefs signed Maclin to a five-year, $55 million deal with $22.5 million guaranteed.
“I played for nine years and he coached me for six of those,” Maclin said on Glenn Clark Radio Feb. 7. “He’s the guy that took a chance on me when I was 20 years old coming out of the University of Missouri.”
“He’s a great coach but he’s an even better person,” Maclin added.
After the 2016 season, during which Maclin posted 536 receiving yards and found the end zone twice while dealing with a lingering groin injury from the season before, the receiver was released by the Chiefs. Maclin signed with the Ravens in 2017 after his two years in Kansas City.
“It came down to between Philly and Baltimore for me, and Philly is clearly a place I know like the back of my hand,” Maclin said, “but it was something about that Baltimore culture I wanted to be a part of.”
While he didn’t have quite the season he was hoping for in 2017, recording just 440 yards receiving and three touchdowns, Maclin says he was affected by injuries as his career wore on, which also took a mental toll. The Ravens released Maclin in March 2018.
He officially retired in March 2019, and he was able to focus on preparing for the birth of his baby girl, Jett Rose, with his wife, Adia.
“I feel like my career didn’t end the way I wanted it to end, but everything happens for a reason,” Maclin said.
Now two years removed from playing, Maclin is excited to see the Ravens and Chiefs, two of his former teams, do battle for years to come. He believes Reid and the Chiefs are well positioned with Patrick Mahomes under center. The quarterback brought Kansas City to the AFC championship game during his 2018 MVP season, ultimately losing to the New England Patriots, 37-31, in overtime before getting over the hump this year.
“You look at some of the stuff they’re doing now to get these guys the ball … it’s genius,” Maclin said of the Chiefs’ offense.
Maclin also enjoys watching Ravens quarterback Lamar Jackson. The young passer stunned the league as the full-time starter this year, becoming the first player in NFL history with at least 3,000 passing yards and 1,000 rushing yards in a single season.
“He’s gonna do whatever he can to get better, and sometimes getting better doesn’t always show up on the stat sheet,” Maclin said of Jackson, adding that the quarterback’s year-to-year progress is integral to the team’s future.
Maclin said free-agent receivers will be looking to join the MVP this offseason after a 14-2 regular season regardless of whether they fit in the current run-first system or not. While some players are new in the league and eager to get paid, others are finishing up their careers and are looking for a trip to the Super Bowl.
“That’s the one thing that nobody can ever take away from you — a championship ring. That’s why you play the game,” Maclin said.
After retiring, Maclin was offered coaching opportunities in the league, but instead decided to call plays as the offensive coordinator at Kirkwood High School, his alma mater in Missouri. The role allows Maclin to spend more time watching his daughter grow up before deciding whether to move on to coaching at a higher level.
Maclin will also have plenty of opportunities to claim more of his free crab cakes for life from Jimmy’s Famous Seafood, an offer made in an attempt to lure him to Baltimore during free agency in 2017.
“They did reach out to me when I retired and said, ‘Hey, forever means forever,’ so I know that they’re people of their word,” Maclin said.
To hear more from Maclin, listen to the full interview here:
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