Chip Highlights: On Henery, Wolff And Vick

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Eagles head coach Chip Kelly touched on a variety of topics during his day-after press conference. Here are the highlights.

WHAT’S UP WITH HENERY?


At the beginning of this season, it didn't seem possible that the 2011 draft could look any worse. But the fourth-round pick of Alex Henery now appears to be even more of a reach.

Henery missed a 46-yarder against Denver and has now missed field-goal attempts in three straight games.

"I think Alex is a really good kicker," Kelly said. "I think he's been very accurate throughout his entire career. It's interesting when you analyze his three misses, and they are all 40 to 49 yards. One was right and one was left and one was right.

"When you look at everything, when someone does make a mistake, how do we correct it? Not that you want them, but if it was all three of them were left, then you would say... we are analyzing where his playing foot is, how is he doing, if he is swinging through the ball and kind of pulling it or is he not blocking his hips out and pushing the ball."

Kelly's point is that Henery's issues don't appear to be technical. And more likely than not, Kelly is choosing not to rip Henery because a kicker's confidence can be fragile.

But the Eagles' special-teams were horrible on Sunday, and Henery contributed.

IS ANYONE GETTING OPEN?

A continuing storyline on offense is whether enough receivers are getting open for Michael Vick.

When Kelly was asked about Vick taking off to run on designed pass plays, he said: "We need to get yards out of those situations and we have to do a better job I think in protecting them and I think we have to do a better job of getting open."

The issues in the passing game tend to be three-fold: receivers not getting open, protection breaking down and/or Vick not getting rid of the ball on time.

Asked if Vick needs to trust his receivers more, Kelly said: "It depends on what play. There's maybe one play where, yeah, he should have let it rip. But there's other plays where we have to do a better job of getting open and other plays where we have to do a better job of protecting him. It's a combination of the whole thing."

EVALUATING THE SECONDARY

The goal for the defensive backs in pass coverage has been to not let anyone get behind them. Of course, they're not always successful with that. Eric Decker had a 52-yard grab and nearly came down with another, but Peyton Manning overthrew him.

"The one thing we are not, except for the long pass right at the end of the first half, which shouldn't have been thrown on us because we should have been in a Cover-3 with a post-safety, but we are not getting the ball thrown over our head. I think that's one of the biggest things our defense has done a good job [of] is eliminate x-plays. You're not giving up a 75-, 80-yarder that's thrown over your head."

Rookie Earl Wolff started at safety in place of Patrick Chung. But it sounds like when Chung is healthy, he and Nate Allen will be the starters.

"I think Nate's played better in the last two weeks and we've seen some improvement from them," Kelly said. "I love Earl's energy in running around, but he's still a young rookie just like a lot of our rookies, and he made a few mistakes. Should have been in the middle of the field on that deep pass down the middle. But I love Earl's energy and he's going to fly around and he's going to give you everything he's got. But he's still learning on the job."

NOT GOING CONSERVATIVE

The Eagles twice had 4th-and-4 opportunities in the red zone, and both times Kelly opted to kick the field goal.

Asked if he thought about going for it either time, he said: "Didn't consider it at all."

Pressed about why he didn't gamble a bit more, knowing Manning was on the other sideline, Kelly responded: "I don't think that's conservative. I think at that point in time when we made those decisions, we were trying to get points."

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  • Richard Colton

    “when you analyze his three misses…One was right and one was left and one was right.” That’s amazing coach speak.

    Tell me this wouldn’t at least make things fun, and yea, he’s unsigned:

    • http://abigbuttandasmile.com/ A Big Butt and a Smile

      lol

    • G_WallyHunter

      Didn’t the lions give him a real shot? must have not impressed them

      • Richard Colton

        I think they kept Akers – they wanted the steady pro. The way the season is going, I want a Norwegian kicker named Kickalicious.

        • Johnny Domino

          What we got now is rekickulous.

        • G_WallyHunter

          Ya Eagles need a Blair Walsh… Not someone who’s missing at 45

      • anon

        He actually made all of his pre-season kicks, including a pretty long one, but as Colton said akers is a vet.

        • G_WallyHunter

          Yeah that’s what I figured, brought him in to do their due diligence

    • Chris

      too awesome

    • Loke1988

      Chip said there are no kicker on the street and I believe him.

      • Richard Colton

        he’s not on the street. He’s in Norway.

        • evanphilly

          So then he would be on the gaten!

        • Loke1988

          Pretty sure I saw streets.

          • Richard Colton

            nope. no streets, only fjords.

    • evanphilly

      If anything, sign him to be the kicker AND the punter. Start the trend, Chip! Start the trend!

      • Johnny Domino

        That would make room for another bad DB or a blocking receiver.

    • jabostick

      Imagine him and Dorenbos? They could be a travelling show during the offseason

  • EaglePete

    Kelly said: “It depends on what play. There’s maybe one play where, yeah, he should have let it rip. But there’s other plays where we have to do a better job of getting open and other plays where we have to do a better job of protecting him. It’s a combination of the whole thing.”

    This is the exact conversation I had in another article and its accurate. Its all 3 phases, WR not getting open, line play and Vick not letting it rip. Somehow that turned into me wanting Vick to become a brady/manning pocket passer. It needs to be both, I do want to see more timing, pocket passing. I think Vick has played well so far just seems to be same stuff we have seen before even if it is a combination of these things. So many times its escape from trouble and try to make a play even in his good games. Much more so than timing passes from the pocket, thats never been his forte. To be fair, a pocket passer can be just as bad and take more sacks if he stays in pocket and holds ball too long. Just pick your poison in what you think will lead to a better overall product that can take you further in the long run.

    I didnt really expect to compete in this Bronco game but hoped for a better offensive performance. When the QB is forced to break off runs so often its not really a good sign. Vick was getting critical first downs with his legs often in that game. It kind of comes back to me when I see young mobile QBs, Im screaming for them to take off and run more. You can win games in this league doing that, esp as a young QB on a bad team. It keeps a D on its heels. However, a bunch of years down the road in that QBs career you want to see them throwing better from the pocket ala McNabb and even Steve Young and many others. Im just not sure Vick has enough of that pocket precision in his game to be anymore than what he is, a bit above average. It seems like a lot of fans are fine with that, I dont understand it I guess except to say its the best we have on this team. This loss certainly wasnt on him, just another year of the same but with a new coach.

    • BrickSquadMonopoly

      A bit above average can win a superbowl at qb. If the best we can acquire is a bit above average then we need to improve the players around him. I like to think Vick is about a Tannehill.

      • EaglePete

        prob right in terms of new QB excitement. Very hard to find a top 5 QB. Or even a servicable QB, ask the Browns, Vikings, Jags, etc etc

        • MJ1

          You all just dont get it! Peyton couldnt come here and get it done with these receivers and online!

          • Token

            Funny story….. Most people were saying the Broncos WRs and line werent very good before Manning got there. People forget that.

          • anon

            d. thomas was a first round pick, and they had to go get welker.

          • BrickSquadMonopoly

            Well Riley Cooper is no Decker lol.

        • jeff

          Eagles have TWO very promising QB’s wasting time on the bench….play the young QB’s they may be the next Tom Brady.

          • anon

            Barkeley isn’t ready to play — needs more time to get his arm back together.

    • poetx99

      i rewatched the 1st three quarters. receivers were not getting open. and weren’t running routes where they were breaking sharply and had a prayer of getting separation. desean got decent (not great) separation on a curl/stick route on the first drive and vick threw it to the outside (away from the corner’s coverage).

      if vick was focused on that route the whole time then, sure, he should have thrown it on desean’s break and it would have been a completion. but in rewatching it, his eyes were to the left, to the middle, and THEN he came back to desean, after he was already out of his break. so while it was technically possible for him to hit desean sooner on that route, it was impossible if he was the third option.

      on other routes he put the ball right on the numbers, in the receivers’ hands and they had NO separation and tried to catch w/ their bodies, resulting in defenders reaching through them to help break up the pass.

      if they catch w/ their arms extended and pull the ball in those are completions. it happened to avant on a quick slant. celek on a short crossing route. cooper at least once, and w/ djax in the end zone (that was a scramble, but had desean come back an additional step he could have caught it cleanly at the 1 yd line).

      we have ZERO receivers to whom you can throw the ball up in traffic in their general vicinity and trust to come down with a catch. damn near all of them have to be wide open. (and even then, still drop it like celek).

      but at the same time, none has the speed and route running combination to get separation. so they are always tightly covered. that’s a messed up combination to deal with.

      one one play (forget when), i think vick either got sacked or took off. cooper ran a stick route. the DB broke on the route before HE did. (meaning he telegraphed his route). had vick thrown with anticipation there that would have been a pick, and possibly pick 6, because the defender was not respecting cooper as a deep threat, squatting on cuts, and finishing his routes.

      on a sideline scramble, cooper has a db to his inside shoulder and a S coming down over the top. vick *might* be able to loft it over his shoulder. but nothing cooper has done gives you the feeling he’d go get it.

      • JofreyRice

        DRC is a tough draw for Desean. They are both finesse boundary players that win with speed, and really avoid contact whenever possible. The difference with DRC is that he also has length. So DJacc really can’t beat him deep the way he can with most CB’s, which affects the cushion he receives for the underneath stuff. When you put all of that together, you get DRC breaking on the curls and comebacks in ways other CBs really can’t afford to.

        Luckily, the league has gone to a lot of tall, physical, rangy corners that just jam you and try to win with length only. Most Sundays, DJacc can beat that.

        There are going to be weeks where Jackson is taken out of the game, though. Kelly and Roseman had the offseason to try and put together a plan for when that happened. Sure, Maclin got hurt, but you have to know guys are going to get hurt in the NFL.

        Cooper sucks. I guess Kelly likes what he does in the run game, but it’s not enough. He’s a Wide Receiver that can block, but can’t catch or run routes. Zach Ertz is a Tight End that can’t block, can catch sometimes and can run routes. I really never liked Ertz, but they spent the pick, and when he’s been uncovered he’s made some plays. Time to increase his workload and see what else he can do.

        • Token

          No choice but to start Ertz really. Celek has been falling downhill for a long time. Its time to take him out back and put him down.

          Since Chip doesnt seem to want to play 2 TEs much, we are probably about to see the start of the Jeff Maehl era. Maybe he can at least run routes. Chip doesnt seem to want Johnson out there.

          Dare I say, for a coach that preached a best players play attitude, he seems to pick favorites even more so than Reid did.

          • JofreyRice

            That pass that Vick threw to Celek in the redzone couldn’t have been more accurate if he had walked up and handed it to him. He had a couple nice games there, but Celek is just too unreliable, or maybe he’s got some phantom injury, as some would argue.

            I don’t think anyone is going to be all that impressed with Zach Ertz, though, if he becomes the #1 TE. Smooth route runner but the hands are suspect, and he’s really not that explosive TE that people are excited about.

          • Token

            Celek just has trouble catching balls, has for years. When he first came into the league, I thought I remembered hands being a stregth of his. But im either wrong, or just he just lost it.

            Like you said Ertz has the same issue. In a league trending towards the Jimmy Graham or Jordan Camerons of the world Ertz is not that kind of guy. Which I do think people expect. Doesnt mean he cant be a good TE, but hes just not that explosive player.

            With all the needs spending a #2 pick on a TE was dumb. Especially since Chip doesnt use them nearly as much as we may have first thought.

            Howie continues to dig his grave. If Lurie doesnt can this clown and get a professional at GM after this season, all this doesnt matter anyway. Its a lost cause, a sunk ship.

      • EaglePete

        ahhh, thanks I wondered how much of it was lack of separation. I dont doubt it but I didnt think it was that bad. We are def not deep in the WR dept. At that point its better to be conservative as the QB which is what MV did and its all you can ask. Lets hope he has some better opps against weakers Ds coming up here in the next 5 to 6 wks and put up some big numbers. Like I said he has played way better and didnt think wed do much against Denver. Im still just wondering if he has enough of a pocket game to take his game to another level. We may never find out because this team lacks talent around him to a degree and the D is another story.

    • #7

      The timing that you speak of isn’t happening because WRs are constantly getting beat at the LOS getting off of jams. Add on an o-line that is killing us with penalties and there’s your problem. I keep hearing people say that Vick should “let it rip”.

      As soon as that happens and balls are bouncing off of wrs/TEs hands, then Vick is a “washed up, turnover machine” again. All we saw on these blogs is that Vick “needs to take care of the football”. Now he’s doing that and now there’s a problem with that.

      Not protecting Vick. This is just facts. Vick had proven that he can get rid of the ball quickly, but where are those quick hitting
      playcalls? I’m not getting on Chippah like the national media is with the mocking of him “reinventing the way football is played” deal, this guy has got to find a way to get guys open.

  • Jeff

    Vick stinks, stop with the weak excuses for Vick, he just keeps losing and losing. Give Foles a chance.

    • BrickSquadMonopoly

      Did you read the article? Nobody is making excuses Vick needs to improve his anticipation. He’s just not the reason we’re losing. Not even close hes putting the team on his back this o line sucks so inconsistent

      • Token

        The question becomes, for how many years can the Oline be the excuse? How many resources have to be put into the line so that people can stop using it as a scapegoat?

        I dont know whether Vick or Kelce is responsible for line calls, buts theres alot that arent made. Adjustments that are missed.

        Theres a lot of lines that stink, with less talent than ours. At some point you gotta make it work.

        • anon

          kelce sets protection

  • Token

    Yea, the Eagles didnt need a guy like Ray Horton. He turned the Browns into a beast of a 3-4 unit in like 3 months. Meanwhile Philly will once again be looking for a DC this offseason. I cant believe the streak of terrible choices there.

    Safety T.J. Ward said defensive coordinator Ray Horton has helped make a difference.

    “The players make a difference and you have to credit management for bringing the right players here,” Ward said. “But Coach Horton and his schemes have aided us in becoming an improving unit.”.

    • Always Hopeful

      Ouch!

    • Tom w

      Banner signed Horton literally 36 hrs after chip signed w us. Banner’s coach didn’t hire him. Banner did along w norv turner and he paid a shitload. Kelly wasn’t even in his own office yet. Just stop w your hate and nonsense troll. Go be miserable somewhere else and stop living and being miserable through a bunch of football players. You haven’t said a positive thing in over a year

      • anon

        So that makes up for picking Billy Davis? We’re 1-4 coming off a 4-12 year. There’s lots great things about the team, but plenty to complain about. Its a blog — not sure why it got so personal.

      • Token

        How dare I question this great franchise. Im thrilled with watching decades of failure. Not quite sure how a Eagles fan is supposed to even be positive at this point.

        Even the excitement of a new era has been tempered because the coach basically stuck with the same exact team and brought in even more bums. Same QB.

        • jamesbondage

          decades of failure? the past decade has been the greatest in franchise history. the new coach has been with the team for less than 10 months and you want a change already? ray horton coached a 3-4 defense and went to a team that had a 3-4 defense already in place. you are comparing apple to oranges here. plus, are you seriously jealous of the browns… really?

          • Token

            I guess we have different views of success. The Eagles havent been relevant since 2004.

            Browns had Dick Jaurons 4-3 D before Horton got there.

        • GetYerFootOutofYerMouth

          Feel free to question them, just have rational and INFORMED questions. You have no idea what you are talking about…

      • #7

        Tom w

    • GetYerFootOutofYerMouth

      The Browns already had a solid defense before the regime change. If you followed all the teams and not just the Eagles you would know that…Just sayin’

      • Explorer51

        Actually in 2012, the Browns were 19th in points allowed and 23rd in total yardage allowed, kind of semi-solid don’t you think? Now, though it’s only after 4 games, they are 8th in points allowed and 3rd in total yardage…so it looks like Horton is making a difference in the right direction, which is the essence of Token’s point.

  • anon

    As I watch the Dolphins game I can’t help but think what GMs can do if they aren’t in the owner’s back pocket. Dolphins sucked the last couple of years, GM was about to get fired so what’d he do, bought players — gave his QB some weapons and b(r)ought a defense.

    To be fair, Vick et. company are putting p 400+ yds a game against playoff teams with who exactly (aside from Shady). Who’s our red zone guy? DJ’s career is revived, but there’s no other marquee names on offense (aside from the o-line), there’s none on the team really — definitely not on defense.

    But is Howie under pressure to get it right? Nope he’s on the 2-3 years plan — this team has been in decline since 2010; 2011 if you’re gracious.

    I understand about building through the draft, but it’s not like we have a bunch of picks like the browns. Let’s get a real DC, get some players and stop being this 8-8 purgatory team that we’ve been for the last handful of years.

    *Note sometimes buying players doesn’t go well, but when you’ve wasted the last 3 drafts and really have no good young players building through the draft is like a 5 year project. I mean look at the track record what makes people think we can properly evaluate talent and even then, that we have the right coaches to develop talent? With crappy coordinators we can waste our next top 5 picks for the next 5 years and the defense will still be crap b/c the scheme is bad — then we get a new coordinator, cut all those players and start over. Vent over.

    • BlindChow

      And the Dolphins lost 38-17.

  • Mr. Magee

    Am I the only one who thought this press conference was weak? Chip didn’t do a lot to win hearts and minds in this one. Which I guess is fine as long as you win the games or at least have a long-term strategy. Can Kelly check ‘yes’ on either of those boxes?

  • Johnny_P

    There’s a reason why Bill Davis has not had any continuity in 1 destination. Look at his Wikipedia page, he’s had like 15 jobs in 20 years. That should be a sign of teams not having faith in his abilities as a DC. So what, he knows 3-4, I do too, that doesn’t mean I can coach a defense.

  • Lenny A Duncan

    Hey I’m petitioning the Birds to let me spread my Fathers Ashes at the Linc. I know they have turned this down before but if your right and it will never work, whats the harm of taking 2 seconds to sign. 2

    http://www.change.org/petitions/philadelphia-eagles-let-me-spread-my-dad-s-ashes-at-the-linc

  • Lenny A Duncan

    Hey I’m petitioning the Birds to let me spread my Fathers Ashes at the Linc. I know they have turned this down before but if your right and it will never work, whats the harm of taking 2 seconds to sign. :)

    http://www.change.org/petitions/philadelphia-eagles-let-me-spread-my-dad-s-ashes-at-the-linc