As first impressions go, Chip Kelly has done well. He’s acquitted himself nicely in his brief time as the Eagles’ head coach.
In his introductory press conference, he mentioned Tommy McDonald, Chuck Bednarik and Reggie White. He scored points for that. He scored some more when he referenced, and later attended, the Wing Bowl. He told some jokes. People laughed. So far, so good.
Of course, he hasn’t coached a game yet. Or presided over a draft. Or made any major roster moves. There’s a lot left to do. Here’s some helpful advice for Kelly as he moves forward into an uncertain future:
Overhaul the defense: You’re an offensive coach, Chip. People are excited to see how your system performs in the NFL. That’s great and all, but you have serious issues on the other side of the ball. Perhaps you heard, but the Eagles were not a good defensive team in Andy Reid’s final season -- which had a lot to do with the coordinator, the defensive line coach and one of the defensive ends getting cut loose during the season.
The Eagles allowed 27.8 points per game last season. Only two other teams –- the Saints and Titans -– were worse. They couldn’t get pressure on the quarterback and they didn’t make plays in the secondary. You could make a strong case for getting rid of a lot of defensive players. Start with Nnamdi Asomugha and go from there. And read this. It will help.
Tweak the offense: You have some solid skill players on offense. Provided that the offensive line is healthy, you’re looking at a minor operation rather than major surgery. And read this. It will also help.
Draft defense first: That fourth pick is attractive, isn’t it? You should get a top-notch player, someone to help you and the franchise for the next decade.
There are a lot of holes on both sides of the ball, but you need pretty much everything on defense -– particularly pass rushing ends and secondary help. Dee Milliner (CB, Alabama) would look awfully good in midnight green.
Ten pieces of advice for Chip Kelly
CSN Philly | Feb 6