The Philadelphia Eagles have finally made their choice as to whom will replace Andy Reid as head coach, and that man is Chip Kelly. Kelly will make the NFL transition after successfully leading his Oregon Ducks team to numerous bowls and even a National Championship game appearance.
NFL analysts have questioned whether Kelly’s creative and high-octane offense can translate effectively to the pro game, however there are some characteristics of his system that would suit the Eagles’ personnel very well. Here are some qualities that Chip Kelly will bring to the Philadelphia Eagles as Head Coach, and how they fit with the Eagles’ roster:
High-Tempo Offense, Speed At Every Position
In his days at Oregon, Kelly was known for recruiting players at the skill positions with great speed and agility. Kelly uses this speed to create space downfield and beat the defense by running straight through them with backs or after the catch. Players such as LaMichael James, Kenjon Barner and De’Anthony Thomas all reflect Kelly’s inclination for speed.
Coming into the Eagles job, Kelly would be able to use very fast players such as DeSean Jackson, LeSean McCoy, Jeremy Maclin and Damaris Johnson to institute the speed factor into his offense. Not only do these players possess speed, but they are skilled at their positions and many have proven to flourish in space, particularly McCoy and Jackson. Kelly would bring the “exciting” factor back into an Eagles’ offense that has struggled in recent seasons.
Another quality of Kelly’s system at Oregon has always been dual-threat QBs, players that can pass well and also make plays with their feet. In the last two seasons, players such as Marcus Mariota and Darron Thomas have provided this aspect of the Ducks’ offense, and they have performed capably under Kelly’s guidance and in his system.
With a playmaking dual-threat QB like Michael Vick, the Eagles’ instantly provide this type of player that Chip Kelly loves to have under center. Despite his injury-prone reputation and poor form of late, Vick still has that ability with his feet, and Kelly could come to Philadelphia and bring his successful offensive system straight into action with Vick. After all, his Oregon Ducks averaged the most points per game of any NCAA team this past season.
An Option Offense That Wins NFL Games
Just ask Robert Griffin III and the Redskins. They have used this option offense throughout the 2012 season, and turned their team around from bottom-dwellers to NFC contenders. Using the dual-threat QB alongside depth at RB and speed at the Wide Receiver position, the Redskins have created a top offense in the NFL. Also, the New England Patriots have used a high-tempo offense at certain times this season, which was reminiscent of Chip Kelly’s system. In fact, Kelly even met with Belichick to share some wisdom about this fast, no-huddle offense that helped the Patriots become the best offense in the NFL this season. Kelly would be able to bring this efficiency to the Eagles, and use our offensive weapons at his disposal to make the Eagles offense great again. An added bonus will the be the entertaining football that Chip Kelly has his teams play, which will re-ignite this Eagles fan-base which lost such interest in the team last season. Some big plays and fast football is sure to give the fans some great reason to actually stay in the stands.
Depth At Secondary
Kelly is known for having deep secondaries that can be productive from 1st-string down to practice squad, whether it be due to his effective recruiting or superb secondary coaching. Regardless, Kelly knows how to create a pass-stopping force on defense, something that he will be able to reproduce in Philadelphia, with All-Pro calibre players like Rodgers-Cromartie and Asomugha. Granted, their performances have been below-par in recent seasons, but a new coach and new defense should help bring these players back to former glories. Promising young corners like Boykin and Marsh will consolidate the depth at CB.
However, Kelly may look to draft and sign a new safety into the Eagles team, to reinforce the position that has been a weakness for the Eagles since the Brian Dawkins’ era. Kelly has a good nose for talent from his recruiting days, and this should prove a great resource to bring in talent for next season.
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