KC youth flag football team headed to Pro Bowl to play in national championship

DE SOTO, Kan. -- Patrick Mahomes and his teammates won’t be the only Chiefs in Florida this weekend for the Pro Bowl.

The Kansas City YMCA Chiefs, a youth flag football team, will not only get to watch the game inside Camping World Stadium, they’ll also compete for the National Flag Football Championship title.

"It’s going to be an environment we’re not accustomed to. But what we are accustomed to is our preparation and our practice that has gotten us to this point," said Ben Krehbiel, the team’s offensive coordinator.

The YMCA Chiefs went 39-0 this season and have won the citywide championship three years in a row.

"The game is pulling flags, and we do a great job of pulling flags," Krehbiel said. "The opportunity that the YMCA and Chiefs have provided is great. It’s a way to stay connected to the sport when tackle can take some kids out of the talent pool."

In December, the Kansas City Chiefs surprised the 8-member team with a trip to the Pro Bowl and the chance to play in the National Flag Championship.

The Kansas City YMCA Chiefs get a big surprise from the Chiefs in December.

"We actually told the kids we, after our success in the Kansas City area, we were entering in a state tournament in Dodge City, Kansas, which did not exist," Krehbiel said.

The big reveal at Arrowhead also included a VIP tour of the stadium, and the players got to meet Chiefs running back Charcandrick West and safety Jordan Lucas.

"Everybody was shocked," recalled Pierce Krehbiel, a YMCA Chiefs player. "There were no words."

Most of the players on the team are 12 years old, and their impressive winning streak wasn’t necessarily an easy feat. They practice twice a week for two hours during the fall season.

"We put in a lot of work just running routes and just crisping our plays up and just putting in work, so we have it all in our head, so we’ll be good for the tournament," said Carson Miller, a YMCA Chiefs player.

The team will play at least four games in Orlando, with the hopes of ultimately facing off against the winner of the "NFC Champion Bracket" during the Pro Bowl pregame.

"It would be really cool to go out there and play against the best and have success," the younger Krehbiel said.

Win or lose, Coach Krehbiel said the team is grateful for the opportunity to represent the Chiefs and the Kansas City area.

"(The Chiefs) bring their 100 percent best effort every time, and like Coach Andy Reid always says, 'Let’s Roll,'" he said.

The team is hoping to squeeze in a trip to Disney World at some point. The boys said winning the championship would be "unbelievable," but they’re most excited about the chance to meet some NFL players.

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