Thursday, December 25, 2014

Kelly leads coaching candidates

Chip Kelly still has another game to coach at Oregon this season, but many are expecting it to be his last game with the school. Kelly, who is next set to lead his Ducks against Kansas State in tomorrow's Fiesta Bowl, has become a coveted NFL coach.

Kelly leads coaching candidates

Oregon head coach Chip Kelly during warm ups before an NCAA college<br />football game against California in Berkeley, Calif., Saturday, Nov.<br />10, 2012. (AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez)
Oregon head coach Chip Kelly during warm ups before an NCAA college football game against California in Berkeley, Calif., Saturday, Nov. 10, 2012. (AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez)

Chip Kelly still has another game to coach at Oregon this season, but many are expecting it to be his last game with the school.  Kelly, who is next set to lead his Ducks against Kansas State in Thursday’s Fiesta Bowl, has become a coveted NFL coach, and the League currently has a handful of open head coaching positions. 

Kelly has led the Ducks to a 45-7 record during his four seasons at the school, and the innovative offensive schemes he has implemented has piqued interest amongst NFL personnel.  Seven teams are in the market for a new head coach, and USA Today has reported that Kelly will inquire about a few.

The Buffalo Bills, Cleveland Browns, and Philadelphia Eagles are listed as teams with which Kelly will interview, with the meetings likely to take place in Phoenix, where Kelly and his Ducks are stationed for the Fiesta Bowl. 

Speculations about Kelly’s future in college football have been present since he became a candidate for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers head coaching position last winter, although he ultimately returned to Oregon. 

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Although Kelly would certainly like to add a national title to his resume, the allure of the NFL may be difficult to pass up, especially with the continued integration of college-style schemes, with which Kelly has found so much success, into pro playbooks.

No one seems quite sure which sideline Kelly will be standing on next season, especially considering the variety of options in front of him, but it seems possible that the Fiesta Bowl may be his last game as an Oregon Duck.

Although both the Browns and Eagles have shown interest in Kelly, he isn’t the only option the teams are pursuing.  NFL sources have said that both teams have reached out to Penn State’s Bill O’Brien and Syracuse’s Doug Marrone.  The Browns have been staying busy, as they have also reportedly spoken to Cardinals defensive coordinator Ray Horton about their open job

The Bills are keeping their options open as well, as they have interviewed former Arizona Cardinals coach Ken Whisenhunt.

Michael Kaskey-Blomain Assistant Sports Producer
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