I’m getting dizzy reading the Week 2 reviews of Chip Kelly’s offense.
Week 1 echo chamber: It’s so fast and rough. I like it. Give me more, and harder.
Week 2 EC: It’s so fast and rough. I like it. Give me more, and harder. But careful, you might chafe yourself and be caught with your pants down.
Not my sexual innuendoes, but the 180-but-not-really-a-180 the media is doing.
Phil Sheridan, now eating your babies with the Worldwide Leader, questions Kelly’s clock management and pace:
If this past Monday was the NFL version of the Los Angeles Lakers’ Showtime, a breathtaking display of the potential of Kelly’s up-tempo offense, then this was an unnerving exhibition of the risks that come with it. When the offensive precision isn’t quite there, it can misfire and place enormous pressure on the Eagles’ defense.
Against San Diego on Sunday, the Eagles just kept winging deep passes to DeSean Jackson until he caught one. The run game disappeared. The defense might as well have had the offensive line coach running it. Kelly got into the red zone with a chance to win the game, failed to involve LeSean McCoy, mismanaged the clock and didn’t know he could use a timeout to keep Vick in the game for a crucial play after an injury stoppage.
The Eagles spent the short week between the Washington win and this game answering questions about just how fast and efficient and downright unstoppable their offense was. Now they have an even shorter week to ponder how they could score 30 points and never have control of a game. Reid, who drafted and signed most of these Eagles, will be here Thursday night with his 2-0 Kansas City Chiefs.
Again, I’ll remind you: Sheridan is largely questioning the effectiveness of Kelly’s offense… as in, it may be too effective.
And then, like his former colleague Bob Brookover, he questions the time of possession thing:
A couple of weeks ago, Kelly gave an impromptu lecture on the meaningless (to him) time-of-possession stat. On Sunday, the Chargers held the ball for 40:17, the Eagles for just 19:43.
No, no, no. Kelly told you this– it has nothing to do with time and everything to do with plays. The Eagles are often going to lose the time of possession game. On Sunday, they lost the snap battle, too– that’s the issue. Chip doesn’t care about the clock. If the opposing defense is on the field for 20 minutes and faces 80 plays and his defense is on the field for 40 minutes and faces 60 plays, Kelly would be fine with that. Count the plays– don’t look at the clock.
But what really gets the head spinning is that when the speed of the offense is questioned, it’s usually quickly followed up with something like this, also from Sheridan:
The Eagles made every kind of mistake possible Sunday — bad penalties, dubious coaching decisions, totally inept defensive coverage, dropped touchdown passes — and still lost by just three points. That’s a testament to just how effective Kelly’s offense is.
That offense might be the single best unit in the NFC East — certainly, none of the defenses has made a strong case for themselves through two games. It would be a shame to squander a prime season in the careers of Michael Vick, LeSean McCoy and DeSean Jackson.
So 8-8 might have seemed overly optimistic before the season. Now it seems reasonable, and the division seems winnable. A victory against Kansas City would go a long way toward keeping that possibility alive.
He just raved about the offense and said they could win the NFC East.
None of what Sheridan wrote is wrong, but the whole undertone that Kelly’s offense may be too fast is just ridiculous at this point. This is
a good problem to have not a problem.
I’m waiting for the Chip Kelly’s Offense is Dangerously Good headline. I know it’s coming.