Over the past seven months Philadelphia Eagles head coach Chip Kelly has learned a great deal about what he has in terms of player personnel. Following his first offseason with the Eagles, with two preseason games remaining, Kelly has finally named Michael Vick as the starting QB and has seen brilliance from running back LeSean McCoy.
On Thursday, Kelly dropped a few more hints as to what to expect from the Philadelphia’s offense in 2013. We all knew that Kelly would utilize each players individual skills to maximize their production. But receivers being allowed to alter their routes to break free from defenders? It’s a beautiful idea, why hasn’t anyone in Philly thought of it before? It’s just a very small glimpse in to the non-traditional thinking that will be a part of Kelly’s up-tempo offense.
Another window appears in what to expect from the “Kelly System”. Quarterback Michael Vick will be free to roam the field and run the ball and vows to “be a threat”. Now that Vick will be able to utilize his greatest asset, his legs, he can start building on the 5,551 rushing yards he has currently — and teams will have to prepare to have a dedicated defender on each play opening the door to create mismatches.
Mix in RB LeSean McCoy who, as we all witnessed against the Panthers, looks to be in mid-season form. Chip Kelly is going to run first, pass second which means McCoy figures to play a huge role in the Eagles success in 2013. Former head coach Andy Reid was a pass-happy guy and still McCoy broke franchise record in TD’s in 2011. Since 2010 McCoy has produced 34 total TD’s (26 rushing), 4,509 scrimmage yards and 3,229 rushing yards. He is ranked league wide within the top 10 in each of those categories, cracking the top 5 in total touchdowns (4th).
If McCoy can achieve all that in a pass-happy offense, imagine what he can do in this new system. I’m willing to bet he out-performs 2011 and will once again rewrite the Eagles history books.
However we need to pay credit where it is due, and none of this is possible if it wasn’t for an offensive line that has looked far superior than in years past due to a key return of Jason Peters and rookie Lane Johnson who has looked absolutely terrific so far, and proving to be well worth the fourth overall pick.
Clearly the Eagles have opened a lot of eyes in just two preseason games. Chip Kelly isn’t letting many, if any, tricks out of the bag during the preseason and the Eagles have had success putting points on the board. Now, with a named starting QB, the Eagles can begin digging in to perfecting their craft and explode on the NFL scene. Personally I am expecting big things from the offense this year and this new information Kelly has provided just increases the amps in my fanbrain.
Now, if only the defense can get it together!