Eagles Wake-Up Call: Jaws Says Kelly’s System Won’t Translate

When Chip Kelly was hired, Ron Jaworski decided to sit down and study tape of five or six Oregon games.

Last week, he looked at a couple more. And the former Eagles quarterback just doesn’t see Kelly’s concepts translating to the NFL.

“It’s going to be interesting to see if this style of offense projects to the NFL,” Jaws said during an interview with Harry Mayes and Nick Kayal on 97.5 The Fanatic earlier this week. “I’m going to say no.”

“I just don’t see NFL passing concepts in this offense. It’s a movement offense by the quarterback, off the run-action, off the read-action. A lot of short, quick passes, dart routes, bubble screens. Very few plays down the field with NFL passing concepts.”

Jaws added that he’s had several conversations with Kelly and hopes he’s wrong. But he offered an honest assessment of what he’s seen on tape.

Of course, we don’t know exactly what Kelly is planning offensively and how it will compare to what he ran at Oregon. We know the Eagles aren’t going to huddle, and we’ve seen an emphasis on the running game, the read option and bubble screens at practices that have been open to the media.

But we’ve also seen the quarterbacks take a fair number of shots downfield.

Jaws’ other concern stems from the fact that opponents faced time constraints when preparing for Kelly’s offense in college. That won’t be the case in the NFL.

“It’s easy to say, ‘Yeah, it worked in college,’ ” he said. “But then I looked at a game like Stanford. Stanford, a good defensive football team, shut them down. I hope it works. I like the innovation, but I think it’s going to be very difficult.

“The NFL is a different league with fast players that have all week to prepare for you. At the collegiate level, you have 20 hours to prepare for that Oregon offense. Take out three hours of game time. You’ve got 17 hours in the course of a week to practice and prepare for that style of offense. It kills you in college. But in the NFL, these guys work 17 hours a day. A day, not a week – 17 hours a day getting ready, so there’s no secrets.”

Kelly has said all along that he’ll adapt his offense to personnel. We won’t know until next season starts how much the NFL version resembles what he did at Oregon.


The Eagles have received league approval to make significant changes to the Linc.

Matt Barkley is showing an early command of the offense. Tim explains.

The national media roundup includes one analyst who thinks Lane Johnson is a “horrific fundamental pass blocker.”

The Eagles are experimenting with a 3-3-5 nickel look that uses the outside linebacker in a “joker” role.


Josh Norris of Rotoworld takes a closer look at fifth-round pick Earl Wolff:

On the point of tackling, Wolff loves to throw his body around, especially when lining up his target on the edge. That same physicality can be seen when closing in coverage, extending his arms to disrupt the catch point and cause an incompletion. Despite those flashes of violence, Wolff also understands when a conservative angle is necessary, specifically when working as the last line of defense from a single high alignment. There are areas of improvement as a tackler, including not recognizing crack back or seal blocks to open the edge, but Wolff is willing and showed a controlled aggression when dipping under blocks or working through trash.

Tommy Lawlor of Iggles Blitz offers thoughts on Michael Vick’s recent comments:

Vick is both right and wrong, as is so often the case with players. Fans do tend to go to extremes. If the guy couldn’t read defenses, coaches would have given up on him a long time ago. That said, it isn’t something he does consistently well. Part of this is due to ingrained habits. Vick has always been a playmaking QB. That often meant holding the ball and waiting for plays to develop. Going from that to getting the ball out quickly and accurately is a major change. Vick has shown progress, but it still isn’t a strength for him and likely will never be.


We’ll take a look at the safety picture and the depth chart at running back.

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  • DutchEagle

    “Very few plays down the field with NFL passing concepts.” How is that an argument against Kelly’s system? Aren’t NFL defenses generally designed to stop just these standard passing concepts and not new ones?

    • Damien

      He’s basically saying, “It won’t work because it’s not playing into the defense at all. He’s actually trying to trick the defense?? Phfff…”

  • Corry

    Jaws keeps assuming that Chip is going to run the EXACT SAME offense he ran in Oregon, but I just don’t think that’s going to be the case now that Kelly is in the NFL. There will likely be some similar concepts, but I think Kelly is smart enough to know that things are just flat out different at the professional level.

    • ClydeSide

      Yes. If Kelly was going to run the exact same offense as Oregon, what the hell did he hire Shurmur for? A number of teams run the inside and outside zone–it doesn’t have to be a read option. For instance, Washington is using zone running and a WCO style passing routes with the Pistol thrown in. I love Jaws–but he’s making uninformed assumptions at this point.
      Actually, Kelly mentioned Ehrhardt-Perkins passing conepts (READ NEW ENGLAND PATRIOTS!!!!) Here’s a link that explains the system–it makes the calls much simpler–perfect for a hurry-up offense.


    • xlGmanlx

      Because Jaws and most of the other reporters are just plain lazy. If you read the press conferences, none of it says I must have a mobile QB and I’m bringing my system from Oregon 100%.

      • Nick

        talk about a couple of naive people. The dude runs 1 style offense, hes suddenly going pro and gonna change it up? Get a grip.

        • xlGmanlx

          Says a forum poster on the internet? My grip is pretty solid, don’t be a dope. You clearly only read what you want to read and hear what you want to hear.

  • Scott J

    Systems don’t win games and championships, players do.

    • eagle fan dwn south

      True Statement Because All Of The Great Players Had The Right To Adjust On There on

  • George

    It took me one halc of watching oregon football to figure out the offense. If you think that college level defensive cordijators cant you are an idiot. Just watch the fishduck play. Chip announces the play, and dares you to stop it. Most of the time, defenses cant.

    • George

      *video its too damn early

    • eagle fan dwn south

      Maybe You Did Figure It Out But Sports Is More Mental Than You Think Meaning Its A Lot Of Time You Know The Play But Just Not Discipline Enough To Trust What You Are Really Seeing As Well As The Players Around you

      • G_WallyHunter

        lol at every word being capitalized

        • eagle fan dwn south

          Yea New Phone And Its Capitalizing Even In Lower Case

          • G_WallyHunter

            Ha thought so

  • eagle fan dwn south

    I love Jaws But He Have Been So Wrong On His Judgment These Past Couple Of years So IM Actually Glad He Think Its Not Going To Work Maybe Now We Really Have A chance

  • dislikedisqus

    I’ ve had the same worry. I think Ck’s offense will have a lot of no or little gain plays because teams will play the run and short pass game. But I think this is why he wants uptempo and to run as many plays as possible. He must figure if you stop 90% of 80 plays, that’s 8 plays I’ve broken long gains on. It happens all the time in the NFL that teams know you’re going to run and the RB bursts through for a big gain. As long as he has a good D and no TO’s, it will be all right. But that’s just a basic football recipe, not Football 2.0. Ultimately, i don’t think he will run a unique or radically different offense. I think he is counting on the same things as other coaches: minimize mistakes,, be in great shape, draft the right guys and give them lots of chances to outperform. Basic football recipe, not rocket science.

  • Niels Rosenquist

    I think there are three (overlapping) components to Kelly’s system. Personnel, scheme, and preparation. The first two are areas where I think the chance of Kelly’s system breaking new ground is unlikely except at the margins. You can’t let your QB run all the time on designed (read-option, etc) plays or he will get killed imo. This, among many other facts of NFL life suggest he won’t be able to exploit certain things he did in college.

    What I am intrigues about is how the practice philosophy of Kelly might lead to better stamina in the players over the course of a long game. While it’s not like the other teams are sitting by a poolside in the offseason drinking beers and loafing, the focus on science-driven workouts that are unique in the league makes me wonder whether we will be less gassed in the 4th quarter next year.

  • Richard Colton

    Chip Kelly didn’t use the same style or similar players at Oregon that he did at UNH. When you hire a guy because he’s an offensive innovator, don’t you expect him to, you know, innovate on offense?

    Just like Jaws, I don’t know exactly what the offense will look like. But if CK calls read-option belly 20 times in week one (assuming he’s not trying to kill Mike Vick) he should be fired on the spot.

    • ClydeSide

      He changed the offense every year at Oregon too, depending on his QB.

    • xlGmanlx

      Better to make sweeping uninformed declarations as opposed to actual insight.

  • Brian

    Is Jaws forgetting that the Eagles hired Pat Shurmur? Logic says that the Eagles’ offense will be a combination of CK’s option and Shurmur’s (west coast?). Is it possible that the reason we’re only seeing CK’s offense in the OTA’s is because most of the team hasn’t seen it before, and needs to learn it ASAP?

    • ClydeSide

      It won’t be the Andy WCO–they are using option routes. It will be an amalgam of Erhardt-Perkins, WCO, Air Raid, Run and Shoot, and anything else tht Kelly thinks will work. It will be something no one anticipated.

      Here’s a link on Ehrhardt-perkins:


      • Brian

        No one but you? Lol. I enjoyed the Grantland story, and I think it backs up your logic better than this link.

      • given some of the leaks from the install going on down at Novacare you make a plausible argument. There’s little doubt Kelly is using the Eagles as a lab and with Shurmur seemingly devising a system not passed around the league.

        They are committed to one work and signals, and there is the concept of reactionary optional routes by the receivers and lets not forget the influx of tight ends. So it’s an apparent weave of a few ideas blended together run by innovators in their hey day as coordinators in the NFL.

        I could see the linchpin being as simple as a couple of sets, and common routes that all the skill players are steeped in no matter where in the set they line up.

        I can imagine the Eagles running the same play out of a different set and ball distribution depends on the defense reaction

        • ClydeSide

          Chip wants to run even more plays than Belichick!

        • Brian

          Similar to New England.

  • Eagles4Life

    Someone should ask Jaws if the system wasn’t translating when he stunk it up in the Super Bowl

    • ClydeSide

      The scheme was good–2 tight ends, one back by the way–SID GILLMAN (back to the future). Jaws blew it.
      All this talk ab out one-back offenses: Sid did that back in the 60s.

    • eaglepete

      Herm Edwards going for that INT and whiffing then the receiver runs in for a TD. That was a game killer also. Never forget my dad jumping up n down on the couch screaming at the TD, I was 10

      • it was that kenny king toss to the short side that killed me, i was 9

  • Another guy who seems to know Kelly’s system before he’s even implemented it.. I love the Polish Rifle, so I’m gonna keep this short, but can we wait till we see the system before we decide what it is or is not going to be?

    • Reckon there ain’t much to talk about these days.

  • ClydeSide

    Everyone here should read this article. This is what Kelly is going to do with his terminology and passing concepts:
    The backbone of the Erhardt-Perkins system is that plays — pass plays in particular — are not organized by a route tree or by calling a single receiver’s route, but by what coaches refer to as “concepts.” Each play has a name, and that name conjures up an image for both the quarterback and the other players on offense. And, most importantly, the concept can be called from almost any formation or set. Who does what changes, but the theory and tactics driving the play do not. “In essence, you’re running the same play,” said Perkins. “You’re just giving them some window-dressing to make it look different.”


    • cliff henny

      great article…think it’s funny all these ‘what’s kelly going to do?’…he tells you! he isnt reinventing the wheel. kelly reminds me of when i was in residential sales, and every month we’d have office meetings and management would go over best practices of top producers. no one did anything crazy, was very simple to copy. but every month see the same names at the top, they were just better. kelly was better in college, let’s hope he’s better in the pro’s. that’s the problem all these experts are having ‘defining better’. it’s not tangible like why a RB is better. Lurie didnt hire him cause he ran the read option or had one word play designs, he hired him cause he won a ton of games with lesser talent.

      • ClydeSide

        And the fact that Bellichick thinks Kelly is smart enough to consult with.

    • This is what Kelly is going to do with his terminology and passing concepts

      Do you have a source on that? I assumed Kelly would install Erhardt-Perkins terminology until he hired Shurmur, who is not from that school.

      • ClydeSide

        The terminology requires Ehrhardt-Perkins concepts. The no-huddle, single-word, hand signal hyper speed cannot be done without it. WCO playcalls are too complicated and wordy. We are going to do what New England did, only faster–with the hand signals. Kelly and Belichick are buds.

        Read the article:

        • Phils Goodman

          I read it months ago. I am not saying I don’t understand the article.

          There is simply no evidence that the Eagles are installing an Erhardt-Perkins system. There may be other ways to do what Kelly wants to do. The Ravens ran one of the fastest no-huddles in the league last year with an Air Coryell system.

          • ClydeSide

            “Other teams have dabbled in the no-huddle, but they can’t commit to it like the Patriots can, for one simple reason: terminology. No team that uses the Coryell or true West Coast systems can adapt easily to a fully functional up-tempo no-huddle because, simply, they can’t communicate that efficiently.” To me, it is evident. Come September, I’ll welcome your recognition of my prescience. :)

          • IMO, I see it with more E-P aspects as well just in how I perceive the lineup’s strengths and weaknesses, and what I’m inferring from the overall “theme” so far (FA signings, draft, little bits of info from the OTAs). No hard evidence to support that; Kelly is playing his cards close to vest on both offense and defense.

          • ClydeSide

            Option routes, receivers all learning all the positions, 2 and 3 tight end sets, one word signals, hand signals–it’s all there. .

    • Great find, I remember that from a few months back. Chris Brown’s writings for Grantland are always outstanding.

      • ClydeSide

        Chris Brown is outstanding–but even he has not quite connected the dots yet with regard to Chip Kelly’s Eagle offense. Which I suppose is good. Gives the Eagles the element of surprise.

  • cliff henny

    a coach as smart as kelly knows all the schemes and concepts, that’s not what set him apart. even with ’13 getting multiple guys drafted, look at the recruiting grades and NFL high draft picks of similar record teams. Kelly’s recruiting grades were on par with Penn state and never had a ton of players drafted. his genius is simple, he did more with less. if he can continue that in NFL, we should be looking at some good times ahead. he wasnt running any schemes/concepts that other teams werent. he’ll be the first to tell you that. he just did it better. that’s why kelly has no problem telling everybody exactly what he’s doing. he’ll tell you, cause he knows that’s not what seperates him. i dont know either, but 46-7 tells me he was doing something and it’s more than he ran the read option.

    as for the stanford example, why not use LSU or Auburn, every loss has the same recipe, opponents d-line dominated Oregon’s o-line, really dominated. it’s college, area where recruiting matters, in the trenches. kelly knew he’d never get enough recruits to run an offense like ‘bama, even though that’s what he wants-power run-so he schemed. all he really wanted was his o-line to just do enough, his play design would do the rest. he also never be able to recruit big arm QB-till Marioti who threw downfield alot, so he schemed.

    • ClydeSide

      He went 46-7 with 3 star talent against opponents with 5 star talent. But he was NEVER going to outrecruit Alabama, Auburn or even USC. At least now he has a shot in the draft and free-agent signings.

    • eaglepete

      One thing missed in all the schemes and strategy is that Kelly is excellent at coaching guys up. That should not be forgotten either

    • beautifully stated, my brother from a southern mother

  • I don’t think Kelly hired Pat Shurmur as OC to install the same passing concepts he used at Oregon.

    • eaglepete

      my thoughts as well, Pat will def have a say and probably a bigger say than most considering Kelly knows he has a lot of NFL experience. He would be dumb to ignore it. Then again, some coaches are head strong but he seems to reign that in a bit or at least you hope. Otherwise the learning curve will be fast and heavy.

  • Chip Kelly

    Do we get an award for having the worst QB’s in the NFC East? Id take Romo over any of our Qb’s honestly.

    • James Skip Carl

      And if you were coach you would probably let him hold for field goals too

    • Is that you Jerrah?

  • Tom Coughlin

    I think Philly just like’s its reputation of having the fattest head coaches in the NFC

  • Donovann McNabb

    Remember when I said RG3 wouldn’t fit with the Redskinns? HAHAHAHAHAHA no wonder I’m so stupid I played in Philadelphia

    • eaglepete

      what are you even talking about. This 10 yr old mentality wont fly here, good luck with that

    • hillbillybirdsfan

      Go back to philly.com

  • Donovan McNabb

    Remember when I said RG3 wouldn’t fit with the Redskins? HAHAHAHAHAHA no wonder I’m so stupid I lived in Philadelphia.

    • eaglepete

      even took the time to go back and edit your really bad jokes. Dude, humor is not your strong suit, may want to work on that.

  • xlGmanlx

    Jaws = idiot

  • Max Lightfoot

    To my knowledge, Kelly has never said he’d bring his college game intact to the NFL. It’s still a mystery what Chip Kelly will actually do. I was hoping for Gus, but we have Kelly. I wish him the best. Right now the realistic goal is to get to 8-8. IMO. If he does that, I’ll stand and cheer. Go Eags!

  • Phil

    It’s amusing how NFL guys always go to the Oregon vs. Stanford game to show how Chip’s offense won’t translate to the NFL. Watch the tape and it is very obvious that Oregon shot themselves in the foot from bad execution on almost every critical defensive play by Stanford. Stanford was sound and that meant they were in the right place to take advantage of the mistakes but it wasn’t that they had a superior defensive scheme. Saying teams in the NFL will have more time to prepare against Kelly is also ridiculous because Kelly’s offense will also have more time to prepare for their opponent and limit mistakes. Kelly’s offense will work as long as he gets execution from his players. It’s as simple as that.

  • Adam Bryant

    The truth is, Kelly has always made adjustments according to the personnel that he had around him. He never ran the exact same thing year to year at Oregon. It’s hard for people to do, but you can’t base everything about what he’ll do with the Eagles on what he did with the Ducks. The proof, whichever way it falls, will come when the season starts.

  • GOD

    The number of successful, playoff game winning, NFL head coaches, who came directly from the NCAA level without any previous experience as a player or coach in the NFL is a list of 1, maybe 2 guys. Jimmy Johnson and anyone else is arguable. Chip Kelly has never played or coached in the NFL that means his chances of success are unlikely.

    • Jack Waggoner

      Given those parameters, you are excluding some people that almost qualify but not quite. Jim Harbaugh did play, and was a QB coach in the NFL before his college coaching career. Tom Coughlin had a stint coaching WR’s before his college career. Dick Vermeil spent some time coaching with the Rams (mostly special teams) before going to UCLA. Still, these guys were hired out of college programs.

      Actually, Barry Switzer, thanks to great coordinators, won a Super Bowl with the Cowboys right out of college. Technically he meets your criteria.

      I know there have been only a handful of NFL guys ever hired with no NFL experience. Even some of the famous flops did NFL stints.

      Spurrier played in the NFL, so had he been successful he would not qualify. He also coached pro football in the USFL.

      Nick Saban had been an assistant with the Houston Oilers and Cleveland Browns.

      Pete Carroll coached defensive backs with the Bills.

      Butch Davis was Jimmy Johnson’s DC in Dallas. I guess he doesn’t count anyway because he did lead the Browns to the playoffs 1 year.

      Petrino had 3 years on the Jaguars’ staff.

      Dick MacPherson had previous NFL and AFL stints with Cleveland and Denver.

      • GOD

        So that’s the point. Aside from Jimmy Johnson, no HC coming directly from NCAA who has ZERO experience as a player or coach in the NFL has had success. Switzer is a name that meets the criteria but doesn’t hold water in a true discussion. Whether or not its relevant to Kelly, time will tell. Chip has never seen a sideline or meeting at the NFL level.

        • Jack Waggoner

          But it’s not much of a point because there has been such a small sample size relatively speaking of guys who have actually had zero NFL experience as a player of coach who have had the opportunity to coach in the NFL. A couple of them succeeded, a few of them did not, most of the so-called flops actually did have some NFL experience.

          In other words, you’re cherry-picking the results to get to your conclusion.

    • cliff henny

      this arguement cracks me up…ok, which way works? OCs/DCs from good teams bad teams, non coords? they all fail at about the same rate. there’s 8-10 openings a year. if it was that easy to say which works which doesnt, wouldnt be 33% turnover a year.
      plus, recently, nfl and college have become a much more similar game. have zone blocking, option routes, zone blitzing. spreads that throw 80% of the time. why qbs dont take as long to develope, too.

      • GOD

        It sounds like Chip Kelly will prove your theory. Time will tell.

        • cliff henny

          he wont prove or disprove my theory, since he is such a small sample size of 1, compared to 7 coords being hired this year. but recently, you’ve seen nfl coords go back and forth between pro’s and college. that didnt happen even 15 yrs ago. you were either pro or college. the games as a whole, are more similar. top college coaches for years and years relied on regional recruting domination (see joepa for 60-90’s) and extremely conservative gameplans to rack up huge winning percentages. now, kids are playing everywhere and coaches are running more pro style offenses and defenses. still have your urban meyers’ spread guys, which is vastely different than kelly’s spread, which would be easily shut down in nfl, but for most part, the good teams have either nfl type offenses or defenses.

  • Nick

    the wrong Kelly was hired.

  • eagle ran

    I would say for jaws to work with Kelly and give him some pointers . But mark my words to get matt Barkley was the best pick the eagles did. Eagle r out…