KANSAS CITY, Kan. — Kansas Speedway announced Thursday that Kansas City Chiefs legend Neil Smith will give the command to start engines for Sunday’s NASCAR Cup Series race.

The speedway said Smith struck fear in the hearts of opposing quarterbacks during a remarkable 13-year NFL career with the Chiefs, Broncos and Chargers.

His first nine seasons were spent in Kansas City, where his menacing pass rush yielded 86.5 sacks and 29 forced fumbles. He also blocked five field-goal attempts, before departing for Denver, where he won two Super Bowls.

“Nobody gave his heart and soul to the game of football like Neil Smith, and I know our fans will enjoy his command to start engines on Sunday,” said Kansas Speedway President Pat Warren.

“We are honored to have him serve as grand marshal for what promises to be an incredible day for Kansas City race fans.”

Now Smith will bring his trademark intensity to the highly anticipated return of NASCAR action to Kansas Speedway. He’ll deliver the command shortly after 2 p.m.