Three Chip Kelly Leftovers

Photo by: Jeff Fusco.

Photo by: Jeff Fusco.

Before I head to the NovaCare Complex, here are three Chip Kelly leftovers we’ve been meaning to get to.

1. A popular theme last summer regarding the Eagles was: How will Kelly adjust to the NFL game?




Considering Kelly was making the leap from college to the pros with four total years of head coaching experience, the question was a valid one. He has said on multiple occasions that he didn't enter the NFL with any preconceived notions or expectations. Now that Kelly's been in Philadelphia for a year, he was asked what the biggest difference was from college.

"I don’t know," he answered. "I don’t think it’s as big a difference as people think it is. There’s subtle things, but it’s still the game. It’s still 11 on 11. We all have no say. It’s all dictated by television. It was the same way in college as it is in the NFL - when we’re gonna play or when a game’s gonna be scheduled. I don’t think that it’s that drastic."

A reporter followed up asking whether the transition was easier because he made the leap from a big-time college program.

"There’s just more people watching," he said. "Honestly, I don’t think it is. Football’s football. Whether it’s Coach [Pat] Shurmur’s son playing in a high school game and going to watch that game being played. The game itself is just... it seems like there’s a lot more people and a lot more [scrutiny] if you look at it that way. I don’t look at is as scrutiny. I just think there’s a lot more passion and a lot more people playing. But I don’t think you approach the game any differently from one level to the next."

2. We've written at length in this space about the "whys" associated with Kelly's program. When he makes changes, he explains them. And players seemed to appreciate that in Year 1.

Kelly was asked where that questioning of conventional wisdom comes from.

"I was probably a pain in the ass as a little kid, I would imagine," Kelly said. "I questioned everything. I’ve always been a why guy, trying to figure out why things happen and what they are and just curious about it from that standpoint. And most of the time, the whys are right. We don’t change drastically. I think that’s kind of silly if you’re just changing for the sake of change. But I think you change when change is necessary. There’s a Latin term, ‘mutatis mutandis’ which is, ‘if there’s a reason for [change].’

"When I became a head coach, I had never been a head coach before and I had no experience being it, so I’m going to ask a million questions about how do you do this, and how does the training room, and how do you operate, because that wasn’t really under my domain when I was an offensive coordinator. In most situations, it’s, ‘OK, that makes sense.’ But I just wanted it to be explained why, like what’s your protocol and how do you do it? Anything that’s going to touch the football team, from there, I think you develop what you want, and your philosophies and how you want things to work."

3. You'll hear a lot of people in the coming weeks talk about how opponents now have a book on Kelly and his offense, but he doesn't seem to think that's much of a factor.

"I think everybody knows what a team’s going to do – not everyone knows, but I think they have a better understanding," Kelly said. "I don’t know how much it helps them, I guess. Like I don’t think we surprised people last year. I think people knew what we were trying to do."

Asked whether the idea that the Eagles do a lot of unique things offensively is overblown, Kelly added: "Immensely. I’ve said that since the day I walked in here. We’re not revolutionizing the game. I don’t know where that came from."

As we pointed out in our inside zone feature, the Eagles focus on using a lot of the same core concepts, but they dress them up differently. They run a lot of the same plays as other teams in the NFL, but they add wrinkles, different looks and use tempo. That's why Kelly constantly seems annoyed when others label him an innovator.

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  • TNA

    Kelly isn’t revolutionizing the game, but he’s certainly revolutionizing the Eagles fan base.

    When are the Mutatis Mutandis shirts coming out? CK has certainly changed the things that should’ve been changed a long time ago for the Eagles organization.

  • Explorer51

    I don’t know if Chip Kelly is going to win a Super Bowl…too many variables including the competition in any given season…but I don’t think any NFL coach will consistently out-think or out-smart him. I was listening to one of the weekend radio morons (does that make me even more of a moron?) complain again about how Kelly didn’t know that injury rule/timeout/ replacement issue last season; don’t you think that Kelly was privately embarrassed about that miscue? I doubt we’ll see that issue again. But I do believe we have a lot of surprises coming our way this year…I can’t wait.

    • Kevin

      I total agree. And criticizing Kelly for a mistake is just nonsense. We all f-up from time to time. The very best of us just don’t make the same mistakes over again. We learn, grow, improve and move on to the next ‘learning experience’. That is just life. Kelly strikes me as the kind of guy/boss/coach that doesn’t mind a mistake as long as you make it with effort and learn from it. But I am sure that it annoys him to have to correct the same thing over and over again.

    • Marcel

      Let me guess Joe Staszak and Matt Lombardo. Staszak complains about the same thing every Saturday.

      • Explorer51

        Yes, that is the moron of which I speak; he has two monotonous statements, trying to make the same point: how can Kelly be that smart if he doesn’t know the rules and they will never be able to replace Jackson, further proving Kelly isn’t that smart. I’m not a big Lombardo fan but at least his NJ.com column on the Eagles isn’t based on asinine repitition.

  • Dominik

    “When I became a head coach, I had never been a head coach before and I
    had no experience being it, so I’m going to ask a million questions
    about how do you do this, and how does the training room, and how do you
    operate, because that wasn’t really under my domain when I was an
    offensive coordinator. In most situations, it’s, ‘OK, that makes sense.’
    But I just wanted it to be explained why, like what’s your protocol and
    how do you do it?

    I just freaking love this mentality. It leads to so many good things if the persons who ask the questions and they guys who answers are smart people who know what they are doing.

    • BleedGreenJames

      I agree, I love questions.

      Hey guys, do you think Foles is fast enough to run Chip’s offense again this year?

      • Dominik

        Why shouldn’t he?

  • PhillySean

    Jaws was among those who expressed skepticism about Kelly’s prospects in bringing his style of play to the NFL. He did a complete reversal following the opening game against Washington.

    Anybody here read that piece? I thought it was an ESPN dot com article, but I can’t seem to find it.

    • NickS FFLC/GM/DPP/Scout/HC/OC

      He probably did everything possible to have them take it down.

    • FluxCapacitor

      Jaws is horrible.

    • Kev_H

      The funny thing, at that point, and even still today, I don’t think Jaws or many of the pundits even knew or know what “Kelly’s style of play” is. I read and hear a lot of things that don’t match up with the actual games and moves. So, in Jaws’ defense, he was probably skeptical of Kelly bringing the style of play attributed to him by Skip Bayless or some other blowhard.

    • Mr. Wu

      zero = the amount of sh!ts I give about what Jaws thinks

  • Explorer51

    Gee, what a brilliant concept, the Giants want to run 70 plays a game: http://profootballzone.com/nfl/giants-running-mostly-huddle-offense-goal-70-plays-game/

    • knighn

      Am I the only one who finds this hilarious?
      They’re going to give Mr. Interception a new offense, a weaker O-line and MORE chances to throw INTs?
      I’ll be shocked if that goes well!

  • Pennguino

    One thing that changed and people stopped talking about was 5-15. Week 11 last year that was the stat and the story for the week. 5 and 15. Five wins and fifteen losses at home. Nicky Six changed all of that. He rattled off 4 straight home wins last year….in the regular season at least. Last home loss was the playoff game. 4-4 lifetime as the starter at home