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From 2009-2012 Chip Kelly’s Blitzkrieg offense took college football by storm. Embracing a no-huddle approach the ducks averaged 36, 47, 46, 49 points per game in those four years. During those years Oregon would finish in the bottom five of time of possession but in the top five in points per game meaning that not only would Oregon score but score very quickly. His offense mixed inside zone, outside zone, zone reads and triple options to be in the top five in rushing yards in every year that Kelly coached. The teams ahead of Oregon were option teams that ran the ball 80%-90% of the time. What is most impressive is that Kelly had three different quarterbacks throw for over 2500 yards and 30 touchdowns during his four-year run creating a true plug in play system. Kelly won 46 games in four years and went 33-3 in conference play. After that remarkable run, Kelly took his talents to the NFL.
His first year in Philadelphia kicked off with a bang as the Eagles led the NFL in rushing, compiled a 10-6 record and a playoff berth. The following season started a downward trend in every offensive category and foreshadowed questionable personal moves that started with the unexpected release of Desean Jackson. By Kelly’s third year that team had gone a complete makeover either through trade or releasing players. Sam Bradford replaced Nick Foles, Demarco Murry replaced Lesean McCoy, and Riley Cooper replaced Jeremy Maclin as the number one receiver. Drafts under Kelly were not exactly fruitful either. The 2013 class produced one starter: Jordan Matthews, 2014 yielded Nelson Agholor (who has yet to go over 400 yards receiving), Eric Rowe (who plays for the Patriots), Jordan Hicks was a solid pick in the third round. Not surprising Kelly was fired at the end of the 2015 season. Kelly’s next stop was San Francisco where Kelly was hired to re-energize a franchise that was hit hard with personnel losses after former head coach Jim Harbaugh was fired following the 2014 season. Kelly’s 49ers finished 31st in the league in yards per game and 27th in points. After one season in San Francisco, Kelly was fired. More details about Kelly’s NFL tenure can be found here.
What is next for Chip Kelly? Kelly is undoubtedly a talented offensive coach as his footprint is all over college football and the NFL. More teams in college football are going up-tempo no huddle; Even Alabama dabbled in the up-tempo spread offense. Kelly is highly unlikely to get another head coaching opportunity considering his 8-23 record the last two seasons. Kelly was also bypassed for any coaching position in the NFL this season after meeting with the Patriots, and Jaguars. What is surprising is that Kelly was bypassed for any college coaching positions. I anticipated that Nick Saban would hire him as an analyst at Alabama where he would exclusively focus on football. Kelly as publicly stated that he does not enjoy recruiting, speaking with the media or glad-handing boosters. At Alabama, Nick Saban handles all that. Kelly, however, was not hired or even formally interviewed.
It is obvious that Kelly no longer has a future in the NFL and colleges aren’t exactly lining up to hire or even interview Kelly. Is Chip Kelly done coaching? I would like to see Kelly back in the college game lighting up scoreboards but his ego may prevent him from going back to college.