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Chip Kelly says he doesn’t need a mobile quarterback

Philadelphia Eagles Introduce Chip Kelly Getty Images

It has been presumed that new Eagles coach Chip Kelly will be using an offense in Philly that relies upon a mobile quarterback.

That’s presumption may have been premature.

As explained by Reuben Frank of CSNPhilly.com, Kelly said his system isn’t predicated on a quarterback who can run.

“[There’s] perception vs. reality,” Kelly said. “My quarterback last year [at Oregon], Darren Thomas, who is up in the CFL, we played in 14 games, he ran for 200 yards.  Everybody is like, ‘Well, you run a running offense.’  Well, look at the statistics, it’s not that.  We don’t run designed quarterback runs or we’re snapping the ball to him and then running quarterback power. . . .

“I’ve never been that way.  We’ve run zone-read concepts, man-read concepts, where it’s a mathematical game.  If there is an extra defender in the box, your quarterback can read him and by controlling him and reading him he is basically blocking him.”

Kelly explained that his approach is to make the most of the guys on the roster.

“It’s about what tools do we have in our toolbox and what tools can we use based on the players that we have,” Kelly said.  “I think what Jim Harbaugh has done in San Francisco and Pete Carroll did in Seattle is that they identified the strengths they had in Colin Kaepernick and Russell Wilson, and they played to them.”

Kelly is right.  Good coaches devise plays and game plans aimed at maximizing the strengths and minimizing the weaknesses of their players.  Bad coaches jam the square peg of their roster into the round hole of their beloved “system.”

Of course, an important aspect of this approach is the composition of the roster.  Specifically, which quarterbacks the Eagles will keep and which ones they’ll add.  If Kelly acquires a mobile quarterback, there will be more running.  If he keeps a drop-back quarterback like Nick Foles, there won’t be.

And Foles could be the answer, at least for now.

“He’s tough,” Kelly said of Foles.  “I think a lot of people don’t understand how hard it is and what toughness means to the quarterback spot.  To just be able to stand in the pocket and throw the football [is tough].  We hit him as many times as we could hit him [when Oregon faces Foles at Arizona] and he just kept getting up and making plays.

“He completed a 13-yard pass left handed against us once and I remember just standing on the sideline shaking my head [saying], ‘What do we have to do to stop him?’  He’s a competitor, he’s accurate, so I’m excited about that.”

Kelly, in theory, could also become even more excited about the more mobile Mike Vick.  If so, Kelly needs to do so soon, because $3 million of Vick’s $15.5 million base salary in 2013 becomes fully guaranteed on February 6.

Regardless, great coaches of quarterbacks (like Andy Reid and Jim Harbaugh) get the most out of whichever quarterbacks they have.  Kelly seems to be willing to follow that same approach.  In time, we’ll find out whether he is able.

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35 Responses to “Chip Kelly says he doesn’t need a mobile quarterback”
  1. vegasdestroyer says: Jan 18, 2013 10:08 AM

    Don’t believe it. Just another fake read-option play by Chip.

  2. greymares says: Jan 18, 2013 10:10 AM

    he says all the right things but actions vs words are the same as perception vs reality. time will tell

  3. blockedshotnyr says: Jan 18, 2013 10:14 AM

    Kelly, in theory, could also become even more excited about the more mobile Mike Vick. If so, Kelly needs to do so soon, because $3 million of Vick’s $15.5 million base salary in 2013 becomes fully guaranteed on February 6.

    ———————————————

    Except he’s not – if you listen to the actual press conference Kelly was extremely specific about Foles and exceedingly vague with Vick with comments like “We’re going to look at everybody…” Vick is as good as gone and anyone that says otherwise is merely speculating, seeking out controversy and a story where there is none.

  4. nfcbeastly says: Jan 18, 2013 10:14 AM

    Chip Kelly couldn’t have come to the NFL at a better time. Eagles didn’t hire him just based upon his offense at Oregon. You talk to every coaching staff he’s been a part of since the early 90′s and all say the same thing: He has a brilliant football mind and works TIRELESSLY at perfecting his craft.

  5. dennisund says: Jan 18, 2013 10:18 AM

    Everyone acts like they know what he’s going to do. Everyone’s wrong.

  6. philswfc08 says: Jan 18, 2013 10:22 AM

    not a big fan of this hiring, but the bright side is that coaching in Pac-10/12 he has seen enough of Foles to already know that he sucks. so, trade him to big red in KC! will save us iggles fans a year of misery w/ Foles at the helm trying to determine if he’s “the guy”. of course we will probably have a few years of misery anyway…just for another reason.

  7. scutzi128 says: Jan 18, 2013 10:22 AM

    I was not happy with this hire but so far he has really said all the right things. It will be nice to see a coach who maximizes his talent and is not trying to always jam a square peg into a round hole.

  8. anonymouslyanonymouscommentor says: Jan 18, 2013 10:23 AM

    After watching the press conference I came away VERY impressed with Kelly. I think he’s going to be a top coach in this league. He’s all about creating advantages wherever possible, and that’s what the best coaches do. His philosophy on the game sounds very similar to what Bill O’Brien talked about when hired at Penn State.

  9. cardiovascularendurance says: Jan 18, 2013 10:30 AM

    The more I learn about this guy, the more I like him.

  10. chrisk61 says: Jan 18, 2013 10:34 AM

    you mention andy reid the end of your article. as a 20 yr eagles season ticket holder, i would NOT put reid in the same category as the other coaches. reid doesn’t adjust and was notorious for not changing his system to fit his players and also not making intra-game adjustments. reid is inflexible.

  11. justintuckrule says: Jan 18, 2013 10:38 AM

    Stacheless-Reid with a visor will be back in college at this same exact time next year. Just watch

  12. kisstherings says: Jan 18, 2013 10:40 AM

    The Patriots run Kelley’s fast paced offense to perfection. You don’t need a mobile QB to run it. Just a good one.

  13. cbs1971 says: Jan 18, 2013 10:41 AM

    Not so fast Vick…you’re not out of the woods yet!

  14. mcoomer146 says: Jan 18, 2013 10:43 AM

    I guess Vick is out.

  15. habsfanatic says: Jan 18, 2013 10:43 AM

    Harbaugh and Carroll didn’t just adapt their offenses to those QBs, they had a hand in drafting them with the clear intention of transforming their offenses with more mobile QBs. Chip may say that he doesn’t need an athletic QB to run the Eagles’ offense but I can’t picture a Matt Flynn or Derek Anderson type guy getting the job in the next few years either.

  16. cliverush says: Jan 18, 2013 10:47 AM

    The difficult part of this system for Mike Vick will be the “read” part. If the team has only a couple of weeks to determine if he is capable in this aspect then chances are Vick is history in Philly. His lack of ability in reading a defense has forced him to run and thus the big hits over the years.

  17. thevolcanokid says: Jan 18, 2013 10:49 AM

    “Kelly is right. Good coaches devise plays and game plans aimed at maximizing the strengths and minimizing the weaknesses of their players. Bad coaches jam the square peg of their roster into the round hole of their beloved “system.””

    Tom Landry sucks.

  18. marvsleezy says: Jan 18, 2013 10:49 AM

    “If there is an extra defender in the box, your quarterback can read him and by controlling him and reading him he is basically blocking him.”
    ________________
    Yea, but if the QB can’t run well, the defender will be coached to ignore the QB as a non-threat and go after the RB.

    For example, if Tom Brady were running a Read option, you want Tom Brady to run it – Hes not a dangerous runner, and hes so great at passing, you love him to run so you can hit him.

  19. alwaysr1ght says: Jan 18, 2013 11:09 AM

    This guy is painting/talking himself into a corner.

    He is talking like he has 10 years of experience coaching in the NFL.

    The NFL is in transition as it relate to the QB position. Nick may be the best buggie whip in town.

    This is a fluid situation.

  20. blockedshotnyr says: Jan 18, 2013 11:12 AM

    Yea, but if the QB can’t run well, the defender will be coached to ignore the QB as a non-threat and go after the RB.

    For example, if Tom Brady were running a Read option, you want Tom Brady to run it – Hes not a dangerous runner, and hes so great at passing, you love him to run so you can hit him.

    —————————————–

    But if you read the whole press conference – he says that you obviously don’t run with Tom Brady that you fit the scheme to the strengths of your players.

    If he thinks allowing Foles to play and develop THIS YEAR is the best option – he will craft the offense around Foles and to his strengths, which will mean less zone read concepts.

    It has been proven time and again in this league that you win smart, efficient quarterback play – not gimmicks – Chip knows this.

    Speculating that he’s going to bring the zone read and the entire Oregon offense is not only pure speculation, it’s just plain wrong. He will craft a pro offense similar to New England’s.

  21. greymares says: Jan 18, 2013 11:14 AM

    chrisk61 says:
    Jan 18, 2013 10:34 AM
    you mention andy reid the end of your article. as a 20 yr eagles season ticket holder, i would NOT put reid in the same category as the other coaches. reid doesn’t adjust and was notorious for not changing his system to fit his players and also not making intra-game adjustments. reid is inflexible.—————————————————————————————————————————which proves there is no requirement to know football to purchase season tickets.

  22. tombradyswig says: Jan 18, 2013 11:16 AM

    “We’ve run zone-read concepts, man-read concepts, where it’s a mathematical game. If there is an extra defender in the box, your quarterback can read him and by controlling him and reading him he is basically blocking him.”

    You lost Vick at “We’ve run zone-read concepts”,

    Just cut VICK NOW Chip, please!! That INT machine is old, slow and not the smartest!
    you’ll be doing 97% of Philly a favor!

  23. alwaysr1ght says: Jan 18, 2013 11:22 AM

    Chip Kelly says he doesn’t need a quarterback with a brain.

    Chip Kelly says he doesn’t need a passing quarterback that can run for his life to avoid a concussion.

  24. alwaysr1ght says: Jan 18, 2013 11:24 AM

    Chip Kelly you need to win and win soon or you will be homesick and missing your days in Oregon.

    You have no friends in the NFL. Winning is your only friend at the end of the day. Win now and flap your lips later.

  25. mattyk72 says: Jan 18, 2013 11:26 AM

    Spurrier 2.0

    He’ll be back in college in 2 years.

  26. vegaskid21 says: Jan 18, 2013 11:42 AM

    AKA bye bye Vick

  27. jmillbpc says: Jan 18, 2013 11:45 AM

    I love when they talk about my patriots on here cause it’s like walking into the real life Player Haters Ball. HATE HATE HATE

  28. thefox61 says: Jan 18, 2013 11:53 AM

    I am a diehard Seahawks fan and was very skeptical when Pete Carroll was hired. Last year (2011) when he “cleaned house” any got rid of Hassellbeck, Tatupu and other popular players and then brought in TJax and a bunch of no name defensive backs, I can honestly say I was not thrilled. When SF hired Harbaugh I was glad and truly thought 2011 was a fluke. I was wrong on both accounts. Both of these coaches have implemented their systems with great success and have helped turn the NFC Worst into the NFC Best, along with Fischer in St. Louis and now Ariens in Pheonix.
    It may take a year or two for you Eagles fans to adjust to the many changes that will happen, but in the long run I think you will be very excited about your team and be glad that this guy is your coach. Then again, only time will tell…

  29. jprcox says: Jan 18, 2013 11:57 AM

    I don’t think Kelly is bluffing here – no way Eagles pay Vick $17m next year – that is insane. What I dont understand is Vick not agreeing to a restructure. Vick is going to be LUCKY to get $2-3m for the entire season elsewhere.

    You can’t come off a bad year asking for Manning type money – no way.

  30. bigblu73 says: Jan 18, 2013 1:35 PM

    Philly fans truly are delusional!!!! Blaming everything on Vick as if there were a myriad of bright spots on the 2012 eagles squad! Lol The entire team underachieved not just Vick! Who can you honestly say had a good season? Not Shady, not D Jax, certainly not Celek AKA Sir Drop A Lot! Offensive line one word ABYSMAL!!! Defense with the worst scheme possible!!!! I could go on and on but its much easier to just blame Vick!!!! Lol And oh yea Nick Foles looked fantastic when he got his shot……. Oops oh no he didn’t he looked pedestrian at best, not to be anywhere in the discussion with RGIII Wilson or Luck! And he had way more offensive weapons around him than any of those other 3 guys!!!!

  31. phillyphannn83 says: Jan 18, 2013 1:39 PM

    philswfc08 January 18, 2013, 10:22 AM EST

    not a big fan of this hiring, but the bright side is that coaching in Pac-10/12 he has seen enough of Foles to already know that he sucks. so, trade him to big red in KC! will save us iggles fans a year of misery w/ Foles at the helm trying to determine if he’s “the guy”. of course we will probably have a few years of misery anyway…just for another reason.
    ———————————-
    Dude you’re so right! I completely forgot that a rookie should’ve done better behind our pro bowl offensive line with the best play calling and clock management in the NFL! What was I thinking?!?!

  32. eaglesfanalways says: Jan 18, 2013 1:40 PM

    Agree Kelly said all the right things at his press conference, but I will see who is taking snaps at the season opener. Realize that if Roseman says Foles is his QB, his job is to make it work. Two points I disagree with in the article – first, Vick WAS a mobile QB, but not no more. I have seen D-linemen run him down from behind; two, Andy Reid tried for WAY TOO LONG to make Donny Mac a West Cost QB, which he never was. Once you look his legs away he was OK at best – square peg in a round hole disqualifies Reid as a great quarterback coach…

  33. eaglesgreennutt says: Jan 18, 2013 2:02 PM

    U know half of you people are morrons have you noticed when foles was in at qb there was actually a pocket formed for him to pass out of. Thats cuz there wasnt a qb behind the line who starts running around the second he gets the ball in his hands .. now call me stupid i seen some nice pockets being formed i seen a qd do his drop and step up and throw yes hes a rookie and the line was garbage imagine if we had our starter in there the pocket would have been even better he didnt panic and take off he let it develop and like kelly said he would take a poundind and get right back up call me stupid but reminds me of a young tom brady remember the guy that replaced drew dletso and we all said who the hell is this guy just needs alot of polishing

  34. jintzforever says: Jan 18, 2013 8:35 PM

    Huge Duck and Giant fan here. Chip will rock the NFL and I’m going to love/hate him now, but he WILL succeed.

    This is going to be fun. Haters, come back next year and let’s see how it looks. He needs a year or two to get his prototype QB, which is a PASSER first but CAN run.

    Dennis Dixon may resurface……

  35. dallascowboysdishingthereal says: Jan 27, 2013 4:23 PM

    Let me get this straight. He plans to tie up a defender in the box to respect the QB threat to run but he doesn’t need a QB that can run. That’s hilarious.

    Oh but he produced a CFL quarterback. ROTGLMAO

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