Chip Kelly will make decision tonight; Eagles to interview Marrone, Jay Gruden
Chip Kelly will make his decision by tonight -- to either accept offers from the NFL or return to Oregon -- a source close to the situation said on Saturday morning.
The Eagles brain trust is in the air flying to Arizona as of this writing, a source said. Kelly is there awaiting owner Jeffrey Lurie, general manager Howie Roseman and team president Don Smolenski. The Oregon coach interviewed with the Browns and the Bills on Friday.
A deal with the Browns was close to done, according to an NFL Network report. But an NFL source said that Kelly had not made a final decision and still had to go through the process of interviewing with the three teams he promised he'd meet.
The Eagles are also very interested in Doug Marrone, as the Inquirer reported on Tuesday. They will also interview the Syracuse coach in Arizona, NFL sources said. The Daily News first reported the Marrone interview.
The Eagles have also asked the Bengals permission to interview offensive coordinator Jay Gruden, a team source said. Gruden, the younger brother to Jon, was up for NFL head coaching jobs last offseason, but took his name out of the running for jobs.
The Eagles had Kelly at the top or near the very top of their wish list, NFL sources said. The fact that they are flying to Arizona with what appears to be a small chance to land the 49-year old suggests as much. The Bills aren't considered serious contenders.
Which leaves the Eagles and Browns, and a showdown between Lurie and his friend and former colleague, Browns CEO Joe Banner. Both teams also interviewed Bill O'Brien this week, but he ultimately decided to stay at Penn State.
The Eagles have three other interviews scheduled. They will meet with Broncos offensive coordinator Mike McCoy on Sunday and have been granted permission to eventually interview Colts offensive coordinator Bruce Arians and Seahawks defensive coordinator Gus Bradley.
"The Eagles are committed to finding the right fit for their head coach and are heading to Arizona now to kick off a week of interviews with a variety of candidates including Mike McCoy, Bruce Arians and Gud Bradley," the team said in a statement.
The Eagles made no mention of Kelly, but it is clear who they are heading to Arizona to meet.
The Browns appear to have the edge. Can Lurie's pitch sway Kelly to Philadelphia?