No preseason game will be as widely anticipated by general NFL fans as Chip Kelly‘s Philadelphia Eagles debut against the New England Patriots Friday night at 7:30 p.m. ET. While it’s rumored that Kelly will reveal an extremely limited amount of his scheme’s intricacies in preseason contests this August — in an effort to take the league and the Washington Redskins by storm Week 1 of the regular season — giving at least a glimpse of the offense’s character will be unavoidable.
Also unfolding in front of a television audience and opposing scouts will be the Eagles’ quarterback battle. It seems the current order is Michael Vick edging Nick Foles with rookie Matt Barkley playing the longshot, and according to NFL Network’s Albert Breer, this will be the order in which they enter the game for reps Friday night. Kelly also expounded to Breer on whether the offense will look different depending on the quarterback under center.
“That’s not fair to say,” Kelly said. “I don’t know. Right now, we’re not doing a ton of game-plan things. When you’re in a preseason game, there’s an evaluation process that has to go on, too. It’s, ‘Hey, I need to get a couple balls to this guy,’ where in a game you might keep feeding this other guy, because of coverage. And it’s not drastically different with either guy in there; they both can run what we’re gonna do offensively.”
Perhaps the most exciting aspect of tonight’s game will be how Kelly employs his run-game concepts at the pro level. He’s got the backfield weapons to do it, and it will be intriguing to see them in action this August.