Chip Kelly Proving College Coaches Work In NFL; Can He Win Coach Of The Year?

By Ryan Wenzell
Howard Smith-USA TODAY Sports

Chip Kelly has done a remarkable job in his first season with the Philadelphia Eagles franchise. He has taken a team that won four games last year and has them at 6-5 already with two more victories than they had all of last season.

Young players and veterans alike are buying into his system, and he has a vision both for the short and long term for this ball club. He has also proven many of his critics wrong in the process. It was said that his system wouldn’t work in the pros, and he would surely need a mobile quarterback to make his offense work.

That has been proven to be false. Kelly’s offense has not only been productive as it is in the top 10 in both yards and points, but he has done it with a quarterback in Nick Foles who is not exactly fleet of foot. Foles is a pure pocket quarterback in the mold of a Joe Flacco.

He is a quick decision maker who can scramble for yards when he absolutely needs to, but he does most of his damage from within the pocket. Kelly has found a way to make it work. The offense has been as productive as ever with Foles at the helm, even more so then when the ultra athletic Michael Vick was in control of the offense.

This puts to bed the whole myth that Kelly “needs” a pocket quarterback. Kelly’s best attribute as a head coach is his adaptability. He has gotten it done with a pocket quarterback, and on defense he has found a way to make it work with a team transitioning to a 3-4 and many parts that don’t fit.

It has been an incredible coaching job that should have him as a major contender for Coach of the Year. While that award may end up going to former Eagles head coach Andy Reid, who incredibly has led the Kansas City Chiefs to a 9-2 record after going 2-14 the year before, it will certainly be a close battle. Remember, Reid inherited Pro Bowl talent on the defensive side of the ball and brought in a veteran quarterback in Alex Smith.

Regardless, Kelly looks like a keeper and is already making his mark on the Eagles and the league in year one. The Eagles’ future is bright with Kelly at the helm.

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