Northwest Correspondent, White Cover Magazine
It’s hard to keep up with Chip Kelly. The man makes more contradictory, life-changing statements in a week than Anne Heche. (How’s that for an outdated joke, America?) After answering calls from NFL teams two weeks ago, Kelly then committed to Oregon, and then he decided to join the Philadelphia Eagles.
The only question now, of course, is How will he and the Eagles fare in 2013?
“The hardest thing for me to do was to leave Oregon,” Kelly told the Associated Press. “I knew it was a great fit, but it was whether I could leave what I have. I love those guys and it had to be a special place for me to leave.
“I knew this was the best spot, but there’s so much more to it… What happens when I leave? Who becomes the next head coach? What happens to those players? You’re not making reservations for dinner. You are changing not only your life, but a lot of other people’s lives.”
According to USA Today, Kelly received a promo for the Eagles from the now-departed former boss of Philly’s clipped wings, Andy Reid.
“The fact Andy reached out to me and told me about his experience here told me what this organization is about,” said Kelly. “There’s not a classier guy. When Andy texted me (Wednesday) when I accepted the job, I told him I had really, really, really big shoes to fill. In typical Andy fashion, he said, ‘Just be yourself and you’ll be fine.'”
While everyone is certainly planning for Kelly’s stay in Will Smith’s hometown to be a longer-than-temporary thing (he signed a five-year deal by the way), he wouldn’t be the first college coach to flame out in the pros. Kelly’s walking into a situation that seems tailor made for his offensive schemes, but will the likes of LeSean McCoy, Michael Vick, and the always temperamental Desean Jackson buy into his system or his strategy?
The Eagles have been a train wreck for two years, and they haven’t been inspirational at any time. It would be hard to imagine Kelly having a Pete Carroll-like impact on a team as discombobulated at Philadelphia’s.
They have Nnamdi Asomugha. And, that… that’s about it.
Kelly made the right choice. He had to go the NFL eventually. Only now, he’s expected to lose. Everyone’s watching him and waiting for another vacancy. Carroll had time to fit in with Seattle. He had a chance to fail and then re-try.
Kelly doesn’t have the luxury, or the option.