MIAMI, Fla. -- The Kansas City Chiefs' offensive line will face a familiar face Sunday when they line up facing 49ers edge rusher Dee Ford.
Ford played his first five seasons with the Chiefs before he was traded to the 49ers over the offseason. Chiefs offensive line coach Andy Heck knows he has a tough task ahead facing Ford and the rest of the Niners' defensive line.
“They are a huge challenge,” Heck said Monday at Super Bowl Opening Night. “Number one these guys are enormous, super talented, fast. It’s as great a challenge as our guys have ever faced. We got to play some of these guys last year so we have an idea about a few guys.”
But being familiar with what Ford can do on the field doesn’t make it much easier for the Chiefs' offensive line strategically, as he poses such a huge threat on the edge with his speed.
“We know Dee well,” Heck said. “I’ve got a lot of respect for him as a pass rusher as a football player. He’s a guy who has improved his game over the years. He’s developed into a very dangerous player and a difficult guy to handle. He will also pose a great challenge for us.
“Now they’ve added the young fellow in there, Nick Bosa. They are playing very well. I’m looking forward to seeing this matchup. It will be a great test for our guys.”
Heck believes what Bosa has been able to achieve has been so unique for a rookie. He added that the Ohio State product can't be categorized as a certain type of pass rusher -- he can do it all.
“It’s special,” Heck said. “He plays with great effort and you combine that with strength, speed and talent, but the thing that jumps out at me is his effort. He’s a complete player. They got a good one there and he will be a good one for a long time to come.
Ford has been practicing in a limited fashion dealing with a hamstring and quadriceps injury. But Heck still hasn’t noticed a drop off in his ability to get to the quarterback
“I’m not very sure about where he’s at, he looks pretty darn good to me.”
Programming note: NBC Sports Bay Area feeds your hunger for 49ers Super Bowl coverage with special editions of “49ers Central” all week (8 p.m. Monday, Wednesday, Thursday and Friday, 9 p.m. Tuesday and 3 p.m. Saturday).
Also tune in at 1 p.m. on Super Bowl Sunday for a two-hour special of "49ers Pregame Live" with Laura Britt, Donte Whitner, Jeff Garcia, Ian Williams, Kelli Johnson, Greg Papa and Grant Liffmann. That same crew will have all the postgame reaction on "49ers Postgame Live," starting immediately after the game.