Eagles Wake-Up Call: Chip Won’t Commit

Chip Kelly was the story.

There is no name this side of Jon Gruden that would have stirred imaginations and debate quite like the Oregon coach. Training camp would have been overflowing with fans dying to get  an up-close look at this new breed of football. Debate would rage over whether he could thrive in this environment, on this level. Kelly and his Eagles would be talked about across the league.

As we now know, Kelly chose the Ducks over the Birds Sunday, and this will not come to pass. And maybe that’s OK.

Being the most interesting team certainly doesn’t mean that you will be the most successful, as the Eagles have learned in recent years. From the Michael Vick signing to the big free agency splash of 2011, they have dominated their share of national headlines. Yet the results on the field haven’t been there.

Maybe Kelly would have been a game-changer. Maybe the Eagles were this close to holding the future of the NFL in their hands.

Or, perhaps his system would have proven to have been a gimmick after all. It’s possible that his lack of experience on this level would have limited his ability to assemble a quality staff of assistants and made it difficult for him to adjust.

It could have gone one of two ways. There seems to be very little gray when it comes to Chip Kelly.

If you are going to take such a risk, it’s key that the man you’re taking the risk on is invested in the mission. He has to be committed; needs to have his heart in it.

Kelly backed out of agreement with the Bucs last year to return to Oregon. This time around he did some heavy flirting with the Eagles and Browns before again opting to stay. There is something in him that isn’t allowing him to pull the trigger.

Kelly isn’t sold on the NFL. It’s better for everyone’s sake, then, that he didn’t say yes to the Eagles. As we learned from that 2011 offseason, big names are great and exciting, but only if those big names are a fit.


Details on Kelly staying put and what’s next for the Eagles.

Doug Marrone agreed to become head coach of the Bills.

Sheil explains why turning Vick into an option quarterback — for Kelly or otherwise — probably wouldn’t end well.

Be sure to check out our coaching tracker for the very latest.


Mike Florio gives his thoughts on Kelly opting to stay at Oregon.

It’s the second straight year that Kelly nearly has left Oregon for the NFL, and the question becomes whether the NFL opportunity will keep knocking.  At some point, NFL teams won’t waste their time trying to hire him.

At some point, Kelly’s Favre-ish indecision could impact recruiting in a negative way.  For now, Kelly’s choice to stay in Oregon will surely help seal the deal for the coming class who will be able to sign their letters of intent early next month.

For now, some league insiders believe that Kelly and his agent, David Dunn, overplayed their hand and were forced to save face.  Others believe Kelly simply wasn’t ready to leave the college game.  If he isn’t ready now, he may never be.

Dan Pompei of the National Football Post believes Matt Flynn could be on the move.

One name who could spice up the veteran quarterback market is Matt Flynn. We’ve heard Flynn could be on the move for the second time in as many seasons, this time via the trade market. Given that Russell Wilson has established himself as the clear No. 1 in Seattle, the Seahawks likely will listen to offers. And given there are more teams in need of quarterbacks than there are attractive, available veterans, it is likely John Schneider’s phone will be ringing. In fact, if a team is willing to take on Flynn’s big contract, it wouldn’t be surprising if they could get the former Packer for reasonable trade compensation.


Phase II of the coaching search gets underway.

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  • 85

    “And maybe that’s OK.”

    You spelled “Thank God for that” wrong.

  • Bdawk20

    The fact that Lurie had Chip Kelly has his number 1 makes me extremely wary of where this franchise is headed. The guy clearly would not have been 100% committed to this job, does he even do his homework??

  • Devilock

    McCoy or Bradley…any other option is just not as good.
    SO glad Chip Kelly is not coming here.

  • Johngiam

    Yay! I just got much chipper lol…..Gus Bradley please!

  • 1972

    The media in this town want kelly for shock value and news purposes, I want a good coach.
    Im hearing alot of gus bradley talk all of a sudden( probably because of last nights game)
    ive been riding that wave for about 2 months now..
    I know mccoy can make foles into a better player but id much rather have the defensive guy.
    seattle is never out of a game with that defense.

    • Johngiam

      So true. The media is dying for chip….Gus is my guy, a “special once in a lifetime coach”….. Whatever franchise get Gus, gets a stud of a leader and teacher

      • Smegga

        Um…..Jay Gruden was “your guy” last week. The week before it was Whisenhunt.

        • Johngiam

          Since you are so hung up on everything I say, while convoy you aren’t even a blip n my radar lol, you should know I always maintained that I didn’t think the was anyway Carrol was going to let anyone intview Gus..I thought he was locked in Seatle for one more year! So of course, when candidates are made available who weren’t available before, oppinions could change.

          Wisenhunt, was the ONY re-tred coach I would consider ONLY IfHE CAME WITH HORTON…I specifically said I would stomach Wisenhunt for a year or teo only to get Horton….would love Wisenhunt as the OC to Abruce Arians tho

          Let me guess, you are Team chip Kelly, flavor of the week sexy bandwagon choice?

          Make no mistake about it, sooner or later Gus Bradl will become one of the best HC in the NFL, no doubt about it! Do we have the vision and the foresight to scoop him up? I can’t imagine him not blowing Howie away as soon as he opens his mouth!

          • Smegga

            Head coaches cannot stop their coordinators interviewing for head coaching jobs. Some, like Marvin Lewis, are difficult to organise interviews with theirs, but it is not allowed to deny them the chance to interview.
            Whisenhunt couldn’t bring Horton with him if he got the job unless Horton got fired. Horton is probably going to be the Cards next HC. You cannot hire an OC/DC to do the same job elsewhere. You can only interview a coordinator for a head coaching job. You can poach a QB coach to be your OC, because that is a higher ranking job.
            I’m hung up on what you say because you are so wrong on a lot of what you say. I admire your passion, really I do, but you do talk rubbish at times. So if I call you out, it’s because you don’t make any sense.

          • Johngiam

            Wtf are you even talking about? YOU HAVE TO ASK FOR PERMISSION TO INTERVIEW any assistant under contract? you can Hire a DC from another team and give him the same job, if their contract expires. You are a fool! You think it’s impossible for Arizona to hire a new HC, who will want his own staff? It isn’t a guarentee that a new HC wants to retain the old coordinator…Horton could very well be the next cards HC..or they can hire someone else who wants to retain him as DC, but it’s not impossible with that the next HC, wants to bring in his own coordinator, those chances diminish because a Horton is one of the best DC in the game…but we are talking about possible hypotheticals and you are ridiculously off

            Do you know what the fundamental definition of asking for permission is? Lol…. You think a coordinator under contract with a team, can just say I don’t care what the team says, I’m going on interviews? Hahaha

            Now try disputing a single word I just wrote!!!

            if you are gonna attack someone, ATleast come correct!! Thanks for playing, try again some other time lol

          • Smegga

            “Wtf are you even talking about? YOU HAVE TO ASK FOR PERMISSION TO INTERVIEW any assistant under contract?”

            Yes. Up until March 1st I think.
            “you can Hire a DC from another team and give him the same job, if their contract expires”.

            If his contract expires, then the coordinator can do whatever he wants, he’s a free agent, Horton is still under contract with the Cards. If he gets fired, then he can come to the Eagles and be the DC, but from what I’ve heard, he’s favourite for the HC job.
            Kyle Shanahan had a clause in his Texans contract that stated if his father got another head coaching job, then he was free to leave for a set price. That’s one example, but they are quite rare.

          • Johngiam

            Not exactly sure what you are even disagreeing with me about. I never said Horton is a favorite tocoordinator Dcoordinator…but we don’t know how it shapes up, and if he doesn’t get the job, he could be fired..lain that case, Ai would go after him…..wtf is the problem or the debate about? I don’t even understand what your problem is lol

            march 1st? Wtf are you talking about? ANY coordinator UNDER contract needs permission to be interviewed! FACT! Nothing to debate, keep it moving…lol

      • aub32

        “Once in a lifetime” I think you want to calm down with the hyperbole.

        • Johngiam

          plenty of really well respected NFL coaches and nfl players even outside of the Seatle organization would tell you the same thing….you think I just pulled the once in a lifetime coach out of my you know what? None of us know anything credible about any candidate…all we have to go by is the style of lay that we see their teams play, and oppinions of the insiders we respect

  • Can’t remember who tweeted it but one national guy (maybe Breer) said it best when he said that I have no idea if Chip Kelly would be a good NFL coach but I’m fascinated to find out.

    I echo the sentiment.. but I don’t want the Eagles to be his guinea pig. Give me an NFL coach.

    • Johngiam

      Amen! Gus bradly, come on down!

  • The Guru

    I was not in favor of Kelly whatsoever….but the best part of Kelly not getting hired is Michael Vick is not coming back so that talk can be put to rest.

    • aub32

      If that’s the case, why hasn’t he been released when reports came out Kelly said no.

      • Johngiam

        Cause you have to release him after the Super Bowl, and it’s ATleast good to offer him as an extra option to the next coach.I don’t think they would even honk about the qb position without Imput from the next HC……no worries Matt..Rational human beings don’t have to worry about another year with Vick.

  • knighn

    Assuming the Philadelphia Eagles hire a defensive-minded coach (say: Gus Bradley) as their next head coach, is there anything that stops them from going after Mark Helfrich as the Offensive Coordinator? (Mark is the OC for the Oregon Ducks and would have taken over as HC if Chip Kelly had actually made the jump to the NFL). Obviously, the next Head Coach would need to be sold on that idea, but I would love it: innovative schemes on defense (Bradley) and innovative schemes on offense (Helfrich). Get the best of both worlds.

  • HowieDon’tKnow

    JL needs to regroup. First, he needs to either fire HR or realign his duties so that he has no actual authority over football decisions. Second, he needs to hire a real GM with real football experience and expertise and let that person lead and decide the coach search. His first three choices (Kelly, O’Brien and Ketter) have all found their current college or pro-coordinator jobs to be better opportunities than the HC at the Birds. This reality needs to be recognized and acted upon or we are going down the road of Buffalo, Tampa Bay, Carolina and other second to third rate franchises. Our current model is broken and needs to be fixed.

    • Johngiam

      In fairness, you really don’t know who the top choices are, or even if we had top choices going into the process. Everything we know is speculation…these days, there is more misinformation and posting by agents, then real credible intel floating around. When have the eagles ever been known to top their hand? NEVER! I wouldn’t be the least bit shocked, if our next coach is one of the least mentioned candidates..lthats why every day that goes by, that Rumors of Gus aren’t flying around, IT’S A GOOD DAY!

      Doubt Mcacoy will pass up the chance to work his magic on Cutler and brandon Marshall.

      Sooner or later, Gus will become one of the best hC in the nfl….hopefully JO has the foresight to lock him up right away. Gus will become a star in this league

      • HowiDon’tKnow

        You’re missing the forest for the trees. Three of the folks they were interested in have declined. Moreover, our owner and Thing 1 and Thing 2 fly across the country to spend 9 hours with a guy. I don’t think you can deny that they wanted him to take the job. The rejections by Kelly and O’Brien validate the talk that Belicheck (who is tight with both) is advising prospective coaches to avoid the Birds. We need our owner to face facts: his dysfunctional organization scares good coaches away. He needs to fix his front office before things will ever be right with the birds.

        • Johngiam

          You think I’m happy with the front office? Howie Roseman in charge puts the fear of god in me..but I also know for a fact, that Mr. Lurie isn’t paying someone for four more years to go away. Roseman just signed an extension..we can complain about him til we are blue in the face, but we are stuck with him for ATLEAST 3 more years!

          I’m not saying that we didn’t have serious interest in chip..lim just thrilled for whatever Eason, he isn’t our coach, and that we no longer have to worry about him as an option. I happen to like this current crop of coaches that are available..just cause iM Gung hO about Gus, truth of the matter is there are a handful of guys I would be ok with

  • barry_nic

    First, there are not only two candidates that are any good. You have to look at the whole picture, Arians is in the hospital with the flu. He is probably the best guy out there, if you don’t believe me ask Rothlisberger or Luck. Chicago is courting him, and if we get him it would be quite a coup. Jay Gruden has a lot of talent, and his demeanor is the polar opposite of his brother. It’s a crap shoot either way. Personally, I’m happy we didn’t get Kelly, but it would have been interesting with him here. As for who they really are targeting, who knows.