Kelly Says he’s not Predictable, Murray Leaves Practice
PHILADELPHIA (973espn.com) - To no surprise Eagles coach Chip Kelly brushed off criticism of the repetitive nature of his play calling Wednesday, putting the problems of the Eagles offense at the feet of his players.
“I think we’ve been varied in our two games, and through our preseason and everything, we’ve been doing a different job, changing formations and things like that," the coach claimed. "When you’re not successful, I think guys are grasping at excuses, to be honest with you. We still need to block and tackle What I’m saying is we need to execute.”
(Listen to John McMullen discuss Wednesday's practice)
Receiver Josh Huff created this firestorm on Tuesday when he admitted to reporters that the Dallas Cowboys were calling out some of the Eagles’ offensive plays, pre-snap.
Kelly was asked about Huff's claim at his news conference Wednesday morning, and claimed the second-year receiver backtracked.
“I just asked him about that,’’ Kelly said. “He didn’t say that to us. I asked him, ‘Do you think they had any of our signals?’ He said no.’’
Pressed on whether something could be up with the offense, whether it's predictability, too much replication in play calling or tipping off intent with certain mannerisms, Kelly claimed everyone has well-known tendencies.
“Everybody has predictabilities and tendencies going into every game," the coach said. "That’s just part of the game plan. “I mean you know when a team is in Tampa-2, they’re going to slant the 3- and 7-technique. And when they do it, it’s not a surprise to us."
After practice Huff took his medicine at his locker.
"I blew stuff out of proportion," the young receiver said. "Whatever Chip says."
-What evidently is a surprise to the coach is the availability of inside linebacker Kiko Alosno moving forward. Kelly called the former Pro Bowler's partially torn ACL a sprained knee and wouldn't even rule him out of Sunday's game against the Jets.
“I don’t know if he’ll be out this week," Kelly said despite the fact that the best-case scenario for Alonso at this point would include a several week absence.
-When it rains, it pours. Embattled Eagles running back DeMarco Murray, who has rushed for 11 yards on 21 carries this season, was forced to leave Wednesday's practice early with a hamstring injury. Murray was listed as limited on the practice report because of the development and if he's unable to go Sunday, Ryan Mathews will get the start with third-down back Darren Sproles moved up a notch and Kenyon Barner also available.
-Wary of the Pope's impending arrival in Philadelphia and the havoc that will cause around the city Kelly confirmed the Eagles would be leaving town earlier than usual for Sunday’s game against the Jets at MetLife Stadium. The Eagles will be busing up to north Jersey on Thursday night and will practice Friday at Monmouth University, Miles Austin's former college.
"The legend is coming home," Kelly joked.
-The Eagles continued to shuffle around their practice squad, bringing back quarterback Stephen Morris and also signing receiver Jonathan Krause, a Vanderbilt product and former teammate of Jordan Matthews who has spent time with both Cleveland and New England.
To make room the Eagles released two local products, receiver Quron Pratt, who went to Rutgers and is a Palmyra, N.J. native, as well as former Villanova running back Kevin Monangai.
-John McMullen covers the NFL and the Eagles for 973espn.com. You can reach him at firstname.lastname@example.org or on Twitter @JFMcMullen