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Doug Pederson: It hasn’t been about getting rid of Chip Kelly’s guys

PHILADELPHIA, PA - JANUARY 19: The Philadelphia Eagles announce their new head coach Doug Pederson on January 19, 2016 at the NovaCare Complex in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. (Photo by Mitchell Leff/Getty Images) Getty Images

The Eagles didn’t take long after relieving Chip Kelly of his duties as both head coach and personnel decision maker to start winding back some of the biggest moves that Kelly made in his one year in control of the personnel department.

Cornerback Byron Maxwell, who signed a huge free agent contract, and linebacker Kiko Alonso, acquired in a trade with the Bills, were both shipped to Miami along with the No. 13 pick in this year’s draft for the No. 8 pick. Running back DeMarco Murray was traded to the Titans a year after signing a big contract of his own a short time later and the easy narrative was that the Eagles were doing what they could to erase Kelly’s stamp on the team.

That wasn’t entirely accurate as quarterback Sam Bradford signed a two-year extension with the team and coach Doug Pederson said on NFL Network Monday that the moves were never designed to get rid of players with connections to Kelly.

“Listen, it’s never been about Chip Kelly’s guys,” Pederson said. “For me, it’s about the Philadelphia Eagles and how we can better our roster and better our football team. I felt with [executive vice president of football operations] Howie Roseman and myself, we’ve been able to do that this offseason so far and we’re always going to continue to try and better the team. If you’re not, you’re not moving forward so I don’t look at it that way.”

There’s nothing that says that it can’t be about getting better and getting rid of the guys that Kelly brought in. The contracts that Maxwell and Murray signed put some limits on the Eagles under the cap and neither player did well during their one season in Philadelphia, so there wasn’t much argument that their presence was making the team better.

That made it reasonable to think trading them and improving the team’s draft standing would be a step toward a better team in the future. The results of that bet will go a long way toward determining if the Roseman/Pederson partnership can be a more successful one.

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15 Responses to “Doug Pederson: It hasn’t been about getting rid of Chip Kelly’s guys”
  1. eagles1960 says: Mar 21, 2016 2:04 PM


  2. JMClarkent says: Mar 21, 2016 2:07 PM

    If this were “Half-baked”, Howie gave all of the players that Chip brought in the “Eff You”, while the smoothie dude earned a “you’re cool”.

  3. edelmanfanclub says: Mar 21, 2016 2:07 PM

    Get better by getting rid of Chips guys

  4. overthedwaynebowe says: Mar 21, 2016 2:13 PM

    Perfect example of addition by subtraction..

  5. dietrich43 says: Mar 21, 2016 2:19 PM

    I’m surprised LeSean McCoy hasn’t commented regarding the racial inequities of all these trades.

  6. jjb0811 says: Mar 21, 2016 2:38 PM


    Nice. Wait until SF gets rid of Kaep, then we’ll hear it all over again.

  7. nenlain says: Mar 21, 2016 3:16 PM

    I believe him because of what has already been stated.

    Bradford was kept and the guys that didn’t perform particularly well (Maxwell, Murray) who had big contracts were dealt. Seems reasonable enough to me.

  8. calmdownsir says: Mar 21, 2016 3:17 PM

    Just looks that way because, well, Chip was 2 sandwiches short of a picnic as GM.

  9. purpleguy says: Mar 21, 2016 4:15 PM

    So he’s not getting rid of Chip’s guys, just the ones necessary to make the team better? What’s the difference?

  10. therealtrenches says: Mar 21, 2016 4:29 PM

    The real language for describing this isn’t “Chips guys” versus “making the team better.”

    It’s “spiting Chip” versus “making the team better,” or “emotional reaction” versus “sound football decisions.”

    They’re not doing any of this emotionally, to spite Chip. It’s pretty clear from the moves made that Howie took a look at the roster, the cap, and the draft picks and went about his business.

    In the process, he improved the secondary, their cap situation, and their first round draft position.

    He left them a little thinner at RB and they still don’t have a 2nd round pick, so it isn’t all sunshine and unicorns. But he didn’t do a bad job with what he had in front of him at the beginning of the offseason.

  11. wileyguy says: Mar 21, 2016 6:33 PM

    They’ve done a better job this year than last that’s for sure.Now,if they can get this draft thing right…

  12. sumkat says: Mar 21, 2016 9:45 PM

    I wouldn’t say it has been about getting rid of Chip Kelly’s guys, as much as it has been about getting rid of Chip Kelly’s mistakes.

    Murray, while not as bad as he looked last year, was never worth the money they gave him. Which is clear since the first thing the Titans did when they traded for him was make him restructure that deal.

    Maxwell was a prime example of when you decide to try to upgrade a premium position via free agency, in a season with a weak class at that position. Again, he’s not as bad as he looked last year, but he’s not a #1 corner, but was sure getting paid like one.

    Alonso I’m not too concerned about. I don’t see him fitting in a 4-3 defense at all, especially is Swartz is going to run some wide-9 like he has in the past. If that is all they had to throw in to get the Dolphins to give up that pick and take Maxwell’s contract, I have no problem at all. Like I said, I don’t see him fitting the defense at all, if he even made the roster would of been questionable.

    That being said, they have to hit on the #8 pick. The 2nd they lost hurts less since they have the extra 3 and 5, but they still need to get an immediate, and long term answer somewhere. Oddly, while not being anywhere near an elite team top to bottom, they really don’t have many holes in the starting lineup after free agency. So they really can afford to take the best player available. They can’t afford another Danny Watkins or Marcus Smith with this pick. They need someone that locks down a position for the next 5-7 years

  13. boltergeist19 says: Mar 21, 2016 10:39 PM

    It’s been about drawing poker chips and they all come up that way huh? Well it’s close enough but the writing is on the wall. He screwed the Eagles org and I would let them go to. Chip or Beaty eyes needs to lay off the rydilin . He sounds like he is on drugs. Slow down and breath, and maybe mix in a salad or a can opener. Geez put down the Otis spunkmeyers.

  14. bobbyhoying says: Mar 22, 2016 2:14 PM

    Before we all throw Chip under the bus, why don’t we wait an see how many games the brain trust wins in the coming season? Maybe Alonso gets healthy this year and we look like fools to Dolphin fans. Maybe Murray recovers from over-use in 2014 and the fan base is cursing Howie in December. Let’s see who the brain trust picks first in the draft this year. I’m not sold on Howie the second Edition. Oh, and let’s see what our two minute drill looks like this year given that Andy tutored Doug.

  15. hollymolley says: Mar 23, 2016 7:18 AM

    Keep in mind that there is still the need for a long term QB. Take a good look at Chris Hackenberg. May be able to get him on the cheap. Just a thought….

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