Lane Johnson: Players were aware of power struggle

Getty Images

The first draft pick of the Chip Kelly era in Philadelphia has revealed his views on playing for the team’s recently-former coach.

Tackle Lane Johnson, taken fourth overall in 2013, said that the players were aware of the power struggle between Kelly and former G.M. Howie Roseman, who became executive V.P. of football operations once Kelly secured control of the team.

“[T]hat’s what I think the biggest thing was,” Johnson said Wednesday, via Corey Seidman of “The power struggle, the front office, I don’t think they were happy. Chip and Howie weren’t happy together, didn’t deal well. Just a lot of tension up there that didn’t need to happen, because when you throw it up there it does trickle down to the team, and the team knows what’s going on. It’s just a negative energy that doesn’t need to exist.”

Johnson also believed that the intense work ethic instilled by Kelly didn’t need to exist.

“We practice pretty much the same from OTAs until the end of the season,” Johnson said. “There’s not a lot of the guys in the league that do that, continuous. It takes a toll on you, especially me, I expect a lot from myself so I’ve hit it hard since January, go out with [Jason Peters], bust some ass, and by the end of the year I feel like I’m gonna fall apart.”

Johnson also said that Kelly sometimes “came off a little bit standoffish,” and that complaints from players like running back LeSean McCoy “did open up some eyes.”

Johnson ultimately compared Kelly’s situation to the struggles of another former college coach who failed at the next level.

“It’s kind of like Nick Saban when he went to the pros and he tried to do the same stuff he does to college kids to professional athletes,” Johnson said. “It’s the way it is for everybody, a live and learn process for everybody, including Chip.”

It remains to be seen whether Kelly will learn from his experience in Philadelphia, and whether he’ll change his ways the next time around.

13 responses to “Lane Johnson: Players were aware of power struggle

  1. I’m not an Eagles fan, so I’m honestly not able to judge, but it seems to me that Eagles fans have not been exactly enthusiastic about the o-line play. Now, it’s easy to point fingers at Kelly, but how about trying to self evaluating your own level of play? It’s not like, say, a Charles Woodson is talking. If the Eagles have decided that the players are running the show, it doesn’t bode well for whoever will take over from Kelly.

  2. Their defense should be complaining about Bill Davis. They were horrible and Maxwell couldn’t cover my grandma.

  3. Year One,a lot of the conditioning changes Kelly implemented worked,quite well. A lot of Veterans actually said they felt stronger later in the season and they were a very Healthy team that year. Year two,a lot changed and that same conditioning regiment,apparently didn’t work as well and the injuries mounted. Johnson is actually right,What works well with 18,19 year old kids,doesn’t exactly work with seasoned pros.

  4. I knew Roseman was behind this . Lurie has fired 3 good front office people plus 2 really good coaches because of Roseman .

  5. CHip Kelly and Josh Mcdaniels learned the hard way that addition by subtraction (Getting rid of great players) really doesn’t work.
    As a bears fan, its tough to justify Brandon Marshall being on the Jets.
    For all the Bears talk, Brandon is great in the red zone.
    This year, the bears were terrible in the red zone.

    Its tough to get rid of great players and say your team is better for it.

  6. The best college coaches that transition to the NFL don’t do their silly little systems and make their players fit into a peg, like Chip or Saban. They don’t enforce discipline and order, like Greg Schiano. Those sorts of people never work in the NFL, ever. The act gets old.
    There’s room for innovations in play calling, but you can’t do things the ol’ college way, and I think Chip is finally getting it.

  7. I live in Philly, not an Eagle fan, but it will not surprise me how many players start sounding off now that he is gone. If they said anything before they would likely be cut/waived…. What does amaze is all the Eagle fans that endorsed Chip in the beginning that are now saying they didn’t even like him, smh…..

  8. dolphins4 says:
    Dec 30, 2015 7:16 PM

    I knew Roseman was behind this . Lurie has fired 3 good front office people plus 2 really good coaches because of Roseman .
    It’s not Roseman that got anyone fired, he outlasted the coach and FO people because he’s Lurie’s top lieutenant, Lurie trusts him and made the decision to move on from Chip because the team got embarrassed in front of the whole country on Thanksgiving, got embarrassed by AZ at home on national tv, and let their division rival clinch the division on their home turf. The Eagles controlled their own destiny and didn’t play like a team that deserved a playoff spot. If the team showed some improvement and won out to reach the playoffs Chip would have got another year, but the bad drops, penalties, missed tackles, the overall sloppy play that had them knocked from the playoffs by Washington for a second straight year. Jay Gruden has won the last 3 against the Eagles, do you think Lurie is a moron who can’t see that the team was a mess? Chip got fired because he made a bunch of personnel mistakes and couldn’t adapt his gameplan during a game to save his life. End of story.

  9. Keeping Andy Reid 3 more years instead of firing him for Chip Kelly would have brought 3 years of NFC east titles or 2 NFC east titles & a wild card birth to our Eagles by now with franchise direction.

    Now we get to sit on the couch & watch Andy’s team play in the tournament as we wear our ICWT shirts.

  10. Mike Tomlin doesn’t work his players hard in practices late in the season. That’s all I know. Not sure what other successful NFL coaches do, but Tomlin gives his vets a lot of days off.

Leave a Reply

You must be logged in to leave a comment. Not a member? Register now!

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.