“I’m very confident that this is the most attractive place for a head coach to work in the National Football League.”
Right now, it’s at least fair to ask if this is even the most attractive destination out of the six teams that currently have a head coaching vacancy.
The potential thorn in the Eagles’ side could be (who else?) Joe Banner, who spent the bulk of Friday courting Chip Kelly. Reports surfaced in the evening that Kelly and the Browns are close to a deal, though the window is open at least a crack.
Via @mortreport, Chip Kelly wrapped up 7 hours of meeting with Browns. Kelly meeting tonight w/ Bills, Saturday w/ Eagles. Browns favored.
— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) January 5, 2013
The Eagles surely saw the first part of this coming. It was widely reported that Kelly would be in high demand, and expected that at least one team would put the full-court press on as soon as the clock hit zero at the Fiesta Bowl. It is also possible they knew Banner and the Browns would be the team to do it.
Kelly as recently as Thursday night stated that he wanted this to be a quick process. Lurie, though, hinted that his team would employ a methodical approach when it came to their search, even as their name continued to be tied to the sought-after Oregon coach.
“The important thing is to find the right coach, not to make the fastest decision. That’s our priority,” said Lurie.
After the Eagles interview Kelly Saturday (it sounds like they will get the chance), they have a meeting set up with Broncos offensive coordinator Mike McCoy for Sunday, and plan to talk with Colts OC Bruce Arians and Seattle defensive coordinator Gus Bradley next week. There could be more names beyond that.
There are a couple conclusions that can be drawn: One, that the Eagles’ interest in Kelly was overstated, and they are comfortable losing him in the name of sound and comprehensive evaluation if necessary. Or two, that Kelly is the man they were targeting heading in, but felt comfortable enough with their stature where they believed they would have their pick of the litter.
Right now, Kelly is reportedly close to choosing Banner and the Browns. You wonder if Lurie has been caught off guard.
WHAT YOU MISSED
More on the report of Kelly potentially landing with the Browns.
The Chiefs made it official with Andy Reid.
As we wait for the Eagles to interview Kelly and McCoy, here’s the tale of the tape.
Jeremiah Trotter was as candid as any player has been on the shortcoming of Reid as a coach.
This whole Banner versus Lurie showdown sets up for some great theater.
You can find all the latest coaching buzz in our special section.
WHAT THEY’RE SAYING
Dick Vermeil had some advice for Reid when it came to Kansas City: “Go.”
“He’s coached at the University of Missouri,” Vermeil said of Reid’s three-year stint as an assistant from 1989-91, “he’s been in middle America before and knows what the people are like. He knows how I feel about it. He’s been in that stadium. He kicked my rear . . . when we were ahead 18-0 . . . and he knows how the fans are there, and how that Arrowhead Stadium is when it’s full.
“And he knows the great respect and admiration people in the NFL have for the Hunt family, so why not go? There are no negatives.”
John Canzano of the Oregonian did a nice job painting the picture of what was likely Kelly’s last game at Oregon.
Go home, everyone. It’s all done and over for the University of Oregon and Coach Visor, right?
Except, here came Kelly rushing down the corridor of the University of Phoenix Stadium 15 minutes later, leading an entourage toward the postgame media news conference. He had running back Kenjon Barner trailing him, and freshman quarterback Marcus Mariota behind that. Also, Nike founder Phil Knight was hurrying along, trying to keep up. And former Duck Ahmad Rashad was somewhere in there, too. And actor Ty Burrell, better known as Phil Dunphy from “Modern Family” was going stride for stride. And in that moment like that, it hits you square between the eyes.
Kelly was right — a football program should never be about one guy.
As Crossing Broad details, the Kansas City media treated Reid’s arrival like a Presidential visit.
The coaching search rolls on. We’ll have it covered for you.