Thursday, September 18, 2014
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Chip Kelly ruling the Eagles with an iron fist

The often incoherent, grammatically challenged ramblings of a man who has watched too much sports, listened to too much music and devoured too many club sandwiches.

Chip Kelly ruling the Eagles with an iron fist

Eagles head coach Chip Kelly. (Matt Rourke/AP)
Eagles head coach Chip Kelly. (Matt Rourke/AP)

The often incoherent, grammatically challenged ramblings of a man who has watched too much sports, listened to too much music and devoured too many club sandwiches.

Chip Kelly had a nickname when he was in Oregon that translates in polite language to Chip “Big Stones” Kelly, and within about a year of his tenure in Philadelphia we have discovered why it fits.

After having his way in a very successful program at Oregon, it appears Kelly has all of his ducks lined up in a row in Philadelphia. And if you happen to quack the wrong note too often, you will find yourself cut loose.

Witness, star receiver DeSean Jackson who begins this week looking for another job.

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Do you agree with the Eagles’ decision to cut DeSean Jackson?
Yes. He caused too many headaches for the team.
No. He’s coming off of his best season.

The Eagles have always made some bold moves, but the decision to cut receiver DeSean Jackson is among the boldest. One of the most bizarre and troubling weeks in the club’s history of relationships with its players ended recently when the Eagles decided to cut him loose.

Why? Well, since the Eagles have decided to act like an arrogant NCAA program and drawn the blinds, you are left to choose from a number of possibilities. 

There is the looming story of his association with gangs from California; there are more definable stories of a selfish attitude and weak work habits; and then there is a belief that Kelly simply thinks he can do better at the position, save some cap space, and use the money to improve in other areas.

One thing is for sure – Kelly wants everyone equally invested in the team, and he has a lot more power than almost any coach in the NFL. Mind you, this power has been accorded after just one season.

However, owner Jeff Lurie is hardly a rookie. He has used Philadelphia as a base to plant a huge money tree just off Pattison Avenue, and he has also used the Eagles as a platform for a social experiment in the form of Michael Vick.

Thus, even if the coach is granted the luxury of silence, in this situation Lurie should stand in front of the team’s fans and – even if he does not take questions – he should explain what has taken place. This is not just a matter of cutting a player, this is a matter of cutting an elite player with a variety of unsavory stories being shoveled around from one media post to another.

There was certainly no problem getting in front of the story when the Eagles decided to give Vick a second chance after prison. Lurie came out and made a sincere attempt to explain the club’s position.

But now, nothing.

It just so happens to be the opinion here that Kelly will have better success with an offense featuring a bigger receiver – especially in the playoffs, and in the long run the team will be better off without Jackson. But that is hardly a majority point of view.

A logical fan would have to assume there is a whole lot more behind the story, otherwise how do you just cut a talent like that loose? This is not a situation like Terrell Owens, a player whose dirty laundry was right out there in the public.

This is all whispers and conspiracy theories.

There are no charges against Jackson, and as far as we know, there are none pending. Did the Eagles think he was headed down the wrong road, did they think he was uncoachable; did they think he can be replaced by a rookie receiver.

All of this is in question, and the fact that the Eagles were willing to both deal with Vick, and then give Riley Cooper a second chance after his racial taunts last summer makes it even more confusing.

Until then, we are left assuming that Kelly simply did not want to deal with a bad guy who wasn’t worth the money, or the headaches. And Chip Kelly gets his way.

Quack. Quack.

Nuf Ced.

Al Morganti is a member of the WIP Morning Show (94.1 FM) weekday mornings from 5:30 til 10 and a hockey analyst for Comcast SportsNet. His twitter handle is @nufced.

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About this blog
Al Morganti is a contributor at Philly.com and writes about sports and entertainment.

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