Kelly On Boykin, Thornton, the Giants


The Eagles added a new name to the injury report today: Brandon Boykin.

The second-year corner suffered a shoulder contusion in last week’s game against the Broncos. In case you’re wondering, the injury was not sustained on a play where Boykin was going up against a right or left tackle from his make-shift outside linebacker spot. The injury happened on a punt, Chip Kelly said.

Boykin and Patrick Chung will both be limited in practice today. But Kelly sounded like he expected Boykin to be ready to go tomorrow. The Eagles’ slot corner is even more important this week against Victor Cruz. Rookie Jordan Poyer will take Boykin’s snaps in nickel today.

Kelly was unsure about when Chung (shoulder) would return. He missed Sunday’s game. It sounds like Earl Wolff will join Nate Allen as the starters once again if Chung can’t go.


Kelly was asked a question about Vinny Curry, but in his response, he offered up high praise for another Eagles defensive lineman.

“I think the one thing you have to realize is Cedric Thornton is playing our best defensive football right now,” Kelly said.

“He’s playing with great effort. I think he’s got a real, real high motor. He’s a real technician. He’s really taken to Azz [defensive line coach Jerry Azzinaro] and the system that we’re teaching over there on the defensive line. Very rarely is he out of position. …He’s really a byproduct of putting it all together. And that’s what he’s doing.”

Thornton leads all Eagles defensive linemen with 25 tackles (per coaches’ stats). He also has a sack, two hurries, a tackle for loss and a batted down pass.

In the Eagles’ base defense, Thornton is a defensive end. In their three-down nickel look, he plays nose tackle. And in the four-down nickel look, he’s a DT.


Todd Herremans had a nightmarish game against the Chiefs in Week 3. But he bounced back against Denver.

“I do know that I thought Todd played a lot better against the Denver Broncos than he did in the Chiefs game,” Kelly said. “And really, I thought when you go through that game, played really well. It was maybe his best game of the year was against the Broncos. So I see Todd improving, I see him getting better. I’m excited where that group is going. We’ve got five guys that are pretty good football players.”


When Kelly was coaching at the University of New Hampshire, Tom Coughlin offered him a quality control job. It was a chance for Kelly to get his foot in the door with an NFL franchise, but he decided it wasn’t the right opportunity.

“The internal debate was it was a quality control position and I wasn’t coaching a position,” Kelly said. “So it was just more that part of when you get to a point where I was, it doesn’t matter what level you’re at, you’re designing offense, you’re calling plays, you’re coaching the individual position. And then even though it’s a huge step up going from New Hampshire to the Giants, that was it.

“But I have all the respect in the world for Coach [Coughlin]. I think he’s a Hall of Fame coach. He’s won two Super Bowls. He would have been a great person to learn from. At that point in time, it was a great job, but it just wasn’t the right job at the right time.”

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  • KimbaFuzz

    Why do they hate Vinny Curry? Someone asks about Curry and Chip responds about Thornton. Weird.

    • Richard Colton

      gap discipline is the first key to any defense. Without it, you’ll get shredded in the run game. 2nd key is disguising blitzes – so you pick your smallest guy to rush the passer over and over again. Eventually the offense will say: “no way they drop Cole and Barwin into coverage and Blitz Boykin AGAIN” – then…bam…you hit them with the Nickel-Blitz. 3rd Key, of course, is fastballs, but we’ve been in Philly long enough to know the story there.

      • Chali

        Then… bam… we get hit with a touchdown from the slot receiver because we’re blitzing Boykin AGAIN.

    • anon

      it was 2 different questions, the article is a little misleading. he basically said vinny is improving but ced is better. he thinks ced is playing the best d on the team and that’s vinny’s competition to get in the game. a follow up was asked about ced where kelly said the quote above.

      • 1972

        Ced, is a journeymen
        Ced, isn’t a number two pick
        and Ced doesn’t have the potential to be a great player.
        If we’re going to be bad, our top picks should be playing regardless of the result. We’re going nowhere this year anyway

  • nicksaenz1

    So nothing about Boykin indicating that his misusage as the world’s lightest OLB will end?

  • Token

    Dunno what hes seeing in Todds play. Guess it speaks volumes about how bad hes been to this point. I realize Chip wants to be Mr. Nice Guy. But at some point things need to change when they clearly arent working.

    • G_WallyHunter

      He can play “no more Mr. Nice Guy” at practice before making some of the necessary decisions

  • LeClaw

    I think he’s got a real, real high motor…translation, he tries really hard and I can’t give you a real reason why he gets as much playing time as he does

  • Soybot

    The high motor comment gave me flashbacks of a by-gone era.

  • Chuck Dougherty

    Dude..when you are compared to all the other QB in NFL and been found that you hold the ball longer than everybody…it’s a sign that you just may be holding the ball a tad bit too long.. ((smh))

  • Richard Colton

    If he learned to slide, maybe he would be able to keep the sand out of his…

    Seriously, the statistical evidence says he holds the ball longer than any other QB. The anecdotal evidence says he holds the ball too long and is often indecisive. But he wants to jump down the reporter’s throat for saying something everyone knows is true?

    It’s frustrating that the QB who, right now, gives this team the best chance to win is not demonstrating the attributes that Kelly has said he needs in a QB. The Defense isn’t the only square peg-round hole on the Eagles.

  • Broadcasting Wisdom

    Vick will never get it. If only we could combine his athleticism and arm strength with the accuracy, decision making, and 6’5 frame of Nick Foles, we could really have something.

    • aub32

      What decision making ability. Are you talking about the same guy that was as much a turnover machine and poor decision maker as last year. The same guy that lost the QB competition because he made poor decisions that lead to turnover in preseason against vanilla defenses. Where is this quick decision making narrative coming from?

  • #7

    I don’t care about him “holding the ball too long” as long as we don’t turn it over.

    On the other hand, we do need to get Ertz in the game and get him the football. It appears that he may have Jimmy Graham type athletic ability. Check the ball down to Shady more. My only complaints.