Will it matter if Chip Kelly has a winning record in 2013? I read a few mock seasons for the Philadelphia Eagles this morning and started thinking about this. The news just broke that Chip Kelly has named Michael Vick his starting quarterback for the season, and that changes the tone of my initial idea.
First, let’s consider the regular season starting on September 9.
The Eagles will face both Peyton Manning and Eli Manning. Barring injury to Peyton, there is no way they win that game. I could see them splitting the series with the New York Giants as that rivalry usually raises the level of play.
They face the Green Bay Packers and the Minnesota Vikings where, if the run defense isn’t solidified, Adrian Peterson could have a field day. There is a string of road games over a short time period, and the schedule will not do Kelly any favors for his first season.
How much can we truly expect from a team a year removed from a 4-12 record? I’d love to see them in the range of 9-7 to 7-9. A 6-10 record would still be an improvement on last year, but I can’t see Kelly happy with that result.
He is here to win. The choice to start Vick is prime evidence of his intent. He is not the quarterback of the future, and I find it hard to believe a good performance would convince the team to grant him a contract extension. Vick is the win-now option.
I believe we will also see Nick Foles at some point this year. Even with a new scheme and offensive line, Vick finds ways to get hurt. The record will ultimately depend on what version of no. 7 shows up to start the season: 2010 or 2012.
All we need to see is improvement and a solid base for Kelly to build on in the coming years. I’m excited to see this team debut with the starting pieces in place and now that we know who the captain will be, the ball can finally start rolling on building the offense.
Matt Shaner is a Philadelphia Eagles writer for RantSports.com. Follow him on Twitter @MDShanersports, “Like” him on Facebook or add him to your network on Google