December 7, 2013 Sections
Winnipeg Free Press - PRINT EDITION
PHILADELPHIA -- That jaw-dropping, eye-popping frenetic pace the Philadelphia Eagles showed in Chip Kelly's debut can be even faster.
Kelly's hurry-up offence sparkled in his NFL debut as the Eagles opened the season with a 33-27 win over the defending NFC East-champion Washington Redskins on Monday night.
Michael Vick and Co. executed Kelly's don't-stop-for-a-breath offence with precision and efficiency, running 53 plays in the first half and racking up 443 total yards. While the rest of the league and a national television audience watched in awe the way the Eagles moved at lightning speed, Kelly sees room for improvement.
"I felt like it was slow, to be honest with you," Kelly said Tuesday.
"I'm not joking. We've got to do a better job. We left the ball on the ground too much. We didn't get the ball to the officials.
"We could have sped things up from a process between plays. That's something we need to continue to work on."
It looked like Kelly was still coaching Oregon against Pac-10 opponents in the first half. The Eagles controlled the ball for 20:20 and averaged 2.6 plays per minute. They outgained RG3 and the Redskins 322-75, had a 21-3 edge in first downs and led 26-7.
Still, it was the first real test for Philadelphia under Kelly. There's still a learning process and players should get more familiar with the way he wants the offence to move as they gain experience in it.
"I saw a team play their first game," Kelly said. "I was pleased, but we still have got a lot of work to do. There's so many things we can continue to work on."
That should be bad news for other teams.
People wondered for eight months how Kelly would fare at the pro level after having tremendous success at Oregon. When he finally unveiled his high-octane philosophy, Kelly showed off the play designs that earned him a reputation for being an offensive innovator.
-- The Associated Press
Republished from the Winnipeg Free Press print edition September 11, 2013 D4