Chip Kelly: Eagles coaching staff to blame for slow start

Chip Kelly is putting the blame on the coaching staff, himself included, for the Eagles' disappointing 1-3 start.

Brad Penner/USA TODAY Sports

After seemingly making critical comments a few weeks ago in which it appeared Chip Kelly blamed players for the team’s unsuccessful start of the season, the Philadelphia Eagles head coach did an about-face Tuesday, laying most of the blame on the coaching staff.

“I think a lot of that is on us, coaching-wise,” Kelly said ahead of Tuesday’s practice, via NJ.com. “We’ve got to put them in a better situation with plays and specifically during play-calling. We have to do a better job from that standpoint.

“We know what our players can do and we have to put them in better situations. I think we have the right personnel here. No question about that.”

The hallmark of Kelly’s vaunted up-tempo offense is quick starts that puts defenses on their heels. But the Eagles have been anything but a fast-starting team, being outscored 46-27 in the first half of games, one of the main reasons the team has stumbled to a 1-3 record.

Kelly, who has been defiant in the face of criticism about the team’s poor play, cited modest success on the offensive side of the ball in last Sunday’s loss to the Washington Redskins as a sign that the team is making inroads to turning around the season.

“With this group,” he said. “Once we establish and kind of get into a rhythm, we can be pretty good.  We did that, especially in the second half of the Redskins’ game . . . And it resulted in a couple of touchdown drives. They key is starting to get these guys into more of a rhythm.”

Kelly went into full mad-scientist mode in the past few offseasons, hand-picking his own players while jettisoning proven ones. It has backfired so far this season, but all is not quite lost just yet. And a win Sunday over the similarly 1-3 New Orleans Saints — along with some offensive efficiency from the start — could go a long way in getting the Eagles back on track.

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