Chip Kelly

ESPN Hires Chip Kelly

It doesn’t sound like we’ll be seeing former Eagles and 49ers head coach Chip Kelly on the sidelines for a college or NFL team this season. Kelly has signed on with ESPN as a studio analyst, according to a press release from the network. Chip Kelly

[RELATED: Chip Kelly Did Not Have Interest In Alabama’s OC Job]

Over the last 30 years, I have experienced football from one perspective — as a coach,” Kelly said in a statement. “Working in television will allow me to see the game from a different angle; simultaneously, I’ll provide viewers an insight to the mindset of a coach and team while offering alternative views of various situations. Once I decided to make the move to TV, my familiarity with ESPN, combined with their high-quality production and vital role in college football, it was easily the best network suited for me.”

It’s a multi-year contract for Kelly and ESPN, though deals for coaching types typically come with out clauses. It’s unlikely that Kelly will break his pact in the coming months, but he’ll probably have his hat in the ring for opportunities in 2018, whether that be in in the professional or collegiate ranks. A report back in March indicated that Kelly was looking to find work in the NFL as an assistant, leading him to TV.

Kelly, 53, coached the Eagles for three years before a trying 2016 season with San Francisco. The offensive-minded coach went 26-21 as the coach of the Eagles but his 49ers went 2-14 last year. Before jumping to the NFL, Kelly amassed a 46-7 record at Oregon. He’ll be providing insight on both NFL and college games for ESPN.

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Extra Points: Foster, Worrilow, 49ers, Chip

In a development that could hurt his draft stock, Alabama linebacker Reuben Foster is being sent home from the combine after he and a hospital worker engaged in a “heated argument,” reports ESPN’s Adam Schefter (Twitter links). What’s more, Foster’s combine interviews didn’t go particularly well, per Matt Miller of Bleacher Report and Katherine Terrell of ESPN.com (on Twitter). Foster was supposed to continue interviews with teams Saturday, but he’ll instead head home to Tuscaloosa. As of last week, one club had Foster ranked as the third-best player in this year’s class. He at least looked like a shoo-in top 10 pick prior to Friday, though that’s now in question.

As we wait for more on Foster, let’s take a look around the NFL:

  • Falcons impending free agent linebacker Paul Worrilow has drawn interest from the Patriots, Lions, Eagles and Colts leading up to March 9, relays Jeff Howe of the Boston Herald (Twitter link). The 26-year-old wasn’t much of a factor last season as a member of the NFC champions, with whom he collected one start and 18 tackles in 12 games. But Worrilow did garner significant playing time with the Falcons from 2013-15, when he logged 47 appearances, 42 starts and made between 95 and 143 tackles in each season. Worrilow also totaled four sacks, three forced fumbles and two interceptions during that three-year span.
  • Former Eagles and 49ers head coach Chip Kelly hasn’t been able to find an NFL job this offseason, even as an assistant, and is now trying to break into the media ranks. Kelly auditioned for FOX last week, tweets Yahoo Sports’ Charles Robinson.
  • Kelly’s successor in San Francisco, Kyle Shanahan, isn’t impressed with the 49ers’ pass catchers, writes Matt Maiocco of CSNBayArea.com. When asked which of the 49ers’ receivers and tight ends have stood out on film, Shanahan said, “No one in particular,” and added that the club will look for help this offseason. Jeremy Kerley and Quinton Patton, the 49ers’ top receivers from 2016, are set to become free agents, making the need to add options all the more obvious. San Francisco might pursue Alshon Jeffery in free agency, and signing him would give the team a much-needed No. 1 target.
  • Defensive guru Monte Kiffin is leaving the Jaguars to join up with son Lane Kiffin at Florida Atlantic University, Alex Marvez of The Sporting News writes. The elder Kiffin, 77, only spent one season in Jacksonville, where he worked as a defensive assistant.

Zach Links contributed to this post.

Chip Kelly Not Interested In Alabama’s OC Job

Former 49ers/Eagles head coach Chip Kelly was viewed as a legitimate candidate for the Falcons’ offensive coordinator position, but now that that role has been filled by former Alabama OC Steve Sarkisian, Kelly has no interest in replacing Sarkisian in Tuscaloosa or accepting any other collegiate job, according to Jason Cole of Bleacher Report (video link). Instead, Kelly hopes to remain in the NFL and ultimately land another head coaching or play-calling gig, per Cole.Chip Kelly (Vertical)

[RELATED: 2017 Head Coaching Search Tracker]

The idea that Kelly is eyeing an NFL job jibes with reports from earlier this offseason which indicated Kelly wanted to immediately jump back into the coordinator ranks. The problem, as our 2017 Offensive/Defensive Coordinator Tracker shows, is that every offensive coordinator vacancy in the NFL is now occupied. Kelly was in consideration for at least two of those jobs, as he interviewed with the Jaguars in addition to receiving interest from Atlanta. Additionally, Kelly recently met with the Patriots and close friend Bill Belichick, and could potentially take a position with New England.

Indeed, the most likely outcome for Kelly entails him taking some sort of offensive assistant/consultant job, and waiting for more coordinator vacancies to open in 2018.

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Rams To Pursue Matt LaFleur As OC

The Rams will request permission to speak with Falcons quarterbacks coach Matt LaFleur about their offensive coordinator position, according to ESPN’s Adam Schefter. LaFleur and new Rams head coach Sean McVay once worked together in Washington, and McVay believes LaFleur can implement his offense and help quarterback Jared Goff reach his potential. According to Schefter, the interest is mutual.

November 8, 2015; Santa Clara, CA, USA; Atlanta Falcons quarterbacks coach Matt LaFleur during the fourth quarter against the San Francisco 49ers at Levi's Stadium. The 49ers defeated the Falcons 17-16. Mandatory Credit: Kyle Terada-USA TODAY Sports

LaFleur, of course, would be a logical candidate to replace Kyle Shanahan as the Falcons’ OC, as Shanahan is set to accept the 49ers’ head coaching job. Just last week, LaFleur was also mentioned as a candidate to join Shanahan in the Bay Area as the 49ers’ new offensive coordinator, but now another California team could be in the lead for his services.

Atlanta, meanwhile, has expressed interest in Chip Kelly as their next offensive coordinator, and according to Ian Rapoport of NFL.com (via Twitter), Kelly would have a real shot at the job if he keeps Shanahan’s system in place. Per Rapoport, LaFleur knows that he will be targeted by both the Rams and 49ers, but in the week leading up the Super Bowl, his mind was singularly focused on helping Atlanta capture its first Lombardi Trophy, and he was unwilling to discuss his future at length (Twitter link).

The 37-year-old LaFleur has served as an offensive assistant at both the collegiate and professional levels, with his most recent college job coming as the Notre Dame quarterbacks coach in 2014. He served in the same capacity with the Redskins from 2010-2013.

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Chip Kelly Legit OC Candidate For Falcons

Just over a week after the Falcons expressed interest in having Chip Kelly become their next offensive coordinator, the former Eagles and 49ers head coach has emerged as a “legitimate candidate” to land the role, reports Jeff Schultz of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution. Kelly would take over for Kyle Shanahan, who will replace Kelly as the 49ers’ head coach after the Falcons take on the Patriots in Super Bowl LI this Sunday.

Chip Kelly (vertical)

The fact that there aren’t any other proven offensive coordinator candidates on the market makes Kelly a viable option for Atlanta, Schultz notes. Long an offensive guru, the 53-year-old Kelly would inherit an enviable collection of talent in Atlanta, whose attack has laid waste to opposing defenses this season. The Matt Ryan-, Julio Jones– and Devonta Freeman-led unit topped the NFL in both scoring and DVOA during the regular season, and it has combined for 78 points in playoff wins over the Seahawks and Packers.

Kelly is known for running a fast-paced offense, which helped lead to his downfall in both Philadelphia and San Francisco, but the ex-Oregon head coach’s NFL failures have “humbled” him, according to Schultz. As a result, Kelly is willing to slow things down, which he’d have to do in order to accommodate the Falcons’ offensive weapons and make life easier on the team’s defense.

Shanahan, meanwhile, won’t be able to take any significant members of head coach Dan Quinn‘s staff with him to San Francisco. The Falcons will prevent him from pilfering the likes of assistant head coach/wide receivers coach Raheem Morris, running backs coach Bobby Turner and offensive line coach Chris Morgan, a source told Schultz. However, offensive assistants Mike McDaniel, Mike LaFleur and Matt LaFleur could end up with Shanahan’s 49ers.

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Coaching Notes: Raiders, Eagles, Kelly, Shanahan

The Raiders announced that they have hired former Chargers defensive coordinator John Pagano as their assistant head coach-defense. Pagano will be reuniting with head coach Jack Del Rio, as the duo worked together in New Orleans.

The 49-year-old had been coaching in San Diego since the early 2000s. After serving as the Chargers linebackers coach, Pagano was promoted to defensive coordinator in 2012, and he ultimately held that position for five seasons. However, following the hiring of head coach Anthony Lynn, it looked like Pagano’s tenure with the organization was coming to an end. That was made abundantly clear last week after the Chargers hired Gus Bradley as their new defensive coordinator.

Ken Norton Jr. will remain the Raiders’ defensive coordinator, but Pagano will certainly help a unit that struggled at times during the 2016 season. The Raiders ranked 26th in yards allowed, and they finished with the fewest sacks in the NFL.

Lets take a look at some more coaching notes from around the league…

  • Eagles wide receivers coach Greg Lewis is expected to take the same position with the Chiefs, reports Alex Marvez of Sporting News (via Twitter). The former NFL wideout joined the Eagles coaching staff last offseason after serving as a Saints’ offensive assistant during the 2015 season.
  • CBS Sports’ Jason La Canfora would be “very, very surprised” if Chip Kelly ultimately replaces Falcons offensive coordinator Kyle Shanahan (Twitter link). This move would have been a bit ironic, as Shanahan is set to replace Kelly as the head coach of the 49ers. Instead of moving to Atlanta, La Canfora suggest Kelly could catch on with the Patriots as a consultant/assistant.
  • Speaking of Shanahan, Falcons coach Dan Quinn says the coordinator is set to meet with the 49ers on Saturday. “I’m really proud of him because it’s not easy to do when there is a lot of speculation and things going outside of your world to stay dialed in,” Quinn said (via Michael Cunningham of The Atlanta Journal-Constitution). “It’s one that should be commended. Being on point and going for it, he totally nailed that.”
  • The Redskins have promoted Chad Englehart to head strength and conditioning coach, reports Jake Kring-Schreifels of Redskins.com. Englehart has served as the team’s assistant strength and conditioning coach over the past seven seasons. The organization hired Kavan Latham to fill Englehart’s previous role.

Falcons Interested In Chip Kelly As OC

The Falcons are getting a head start on replacing offensive coordinator Kyle Shanahan, who is likely to become the next 49ers head coach. Atlanta is already lining up candidates for OC, and the club has expressed interest in former San Francisco/Philadelphia head coach Chip Kelly, according to Jay Glazer of FOX Sports (Twitter link).Chip Kelly (Vertical)

[RELATED: Falcons To Pursue Matt Ryan Extension]

Kelly has met with at least one club since being dismissed by the 49ers, interviewing with the Jaguars about both their head coaching vacancy and their offensive coordinator position. Both of those roles were filled by internal candidates, as Jacksonville promoted Doug Marrone and Nathaniel Hackett to head coach and OC, respectively. Kelly also planned to meet with the Patriots and friend Bill Belichick, and was indeed spotted at Thursday’s practice session, per Mike Reiss of ESPN.com.

Kelly, 53, posted a mixed record during his two head coaching stints, but does seem to want to remain in the NFL as an offensive coordinator. Despite poor results during the past few years, Kelly can still point to 2013 — his first season in the league — as a success after directing the Eagles’ offense to a No. 3 DVOA ranking and coaching quarterback Nick Foles to a 27:2 touchdown-to-interception ratio. Concerns about the quick pace of Kelly’s offense, and its negative effect on his club’s own defense, could continue to hinder Kelly’s job prospects, however.

While other potential candidates for the Falcons OC job aren’t yet known, internal options could include quarterbacks coach Matt LaFleur and offensive assistant Mike McDaniel, as Ian Rapoport of NFL.com noted earlier this month.

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Chip Kelly To Meet With Patriots?

Following the Jaguars’ decision not to hire Chip Kelly as their offensive coordinator, the recently fired coach plans to meet with the Patriots, Chris Mortensen of ESPN.com reports. Details of this meeting are scarce, but Mortensen points to Kelly having an advocate for a place in the NFL in Bill Belichick. The perennially successful Patriots coach and Kelly have exchanged football concepts since Kelly’s days at Oregon, per Mortensen.

Tom Coughlin was behind the push for Kelly to receive an extensive look for the Jags’ OC job, and the former Eagles and 49ers coach believed he would be offered the position during his interview earlier this week. Although Coughlin urged Doug Marrone to explore adding Kelly to the Jacksonville staff as OC or in another offensive capacity, Marrone didn’t end up seeing a fit. The Jags gave the job to interim OC Nathaniel Hackett, but Kelly could have a chance to interview for a consultant-type role with the Patriots.

New England obviously has an offensive coordinator after Josh McDaniels announced he was withdrawing his name from consideration for the 49ers’ HC job. But the Patriots have a recent history in bringing coaches as unspecified assistants.

After an unmemorable stint as the Rams’ OC, McDaniels returned to New England during the 2011 playoffs despite Bill O’Brien‘s then-presence as the team’s OC. However, O’Brien had announced he was taking the Penn State job in the days prior, so a more logical role existed for McDaniels than one would for Kelly. Brian Daboll also rejoined his former team during the 2012 playoffs after being fired by the Chiefs, adding to the unique history here.

The Jaguars’ job and this prospective summit represent the only known NFL offseason interest for Kelly, whom the 49ers fired after a 2-14 season.

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Coaching Notes: Bradley, Kelly, Bears, Titans

The Chargers and new head coach Anthony Lynn want Gus Bradley to be their defensive coordinator, reports Michael Silver of Sports Illustrated (via Twitter). It was reported last week that the new Los Angeles franchise was looking at Bradley for the gig, and that interest made more sense following reports that former defensive coordinator John Pagano wouldn’t be returning.

However, Bradley isn’t in a rush to sign a deal. The former Jaguars coach is waiting to see whether the 49ers will hire Seahawks offensive line/assistant head coach Tom Cable as their head coach. The duo coached together in Seattle from 2011 through 2012, and we can assume that Bradley would be interested in joining Cable’s 49ers staff. Alex Marvez of the Sporting News reports (via Twitter) that Bradley is a “top choice” for Cable’s hypothetical staff.

Let’s take a look at some more coaching notes from around the NFL…

  • Chip Kelly headed into his interview with the Jaguars believing he’d get offered the offensive coordinator position, reports Ian Rapoport of NFL.com (via Twitter). In fact, the former Eagles and 49ers head coach already has some “assistant hires” ready to go. Rapoport notes that there’s a good chance Kelly gets the gig.
  • The Bears have hired Jeremiah Washburn to be their offensive line coach, reports Marvez (via Twitter). Washburn spent last season as the Dolphins assistant offensive line coach, and he also spent time coaching with the Lions and Ravens.
  • The Titans have added a pair of coaches to their staff. Jim Wyatt of TitansOnline.com reports that the team has added former Temple passing game coordinator Frisman Jackson as their new wide receivers coach. The team has also hired Craig Aukerman to be an assistant special teams coach. Aukerman served as the Chargers special teams coordinator last season.
  • The Browns hired Blake Williams as their linebackers coach and Jerod Kruse as an assistant defensive backs coach, reports Nate Ulrich of Ohio.com (via Twitter). Williams, the son of defensive coordinator Gregg Williams, spent last season working under his dad in Los Angeles.
  • The Broncos have added John Benton to their coaching staff as an assistant offensive line coach, reports Cameron Wolfe of The Denver Post. Benton has coached in the NFL for 13 years, and he spent last season working for the Jaguars.

Jaguars Interviewing Chip Kelly For OC Role

Chip Kelly is in Jacksonville today interviewing for the team’s offensive coordinator position, Hays Carlyon of 1010XL reports (on Twitter). The Jaguars are interviewing multiple OC candidates, with Nathaniel Hackett expected to receive one as well, Ian Rapoport of NFL.com tweets.

This is a second summit between the Jaguars and Kelly. Before taking the interim tag off of Doug Marrone‘s head coach title, the Jags interviewed Kelly for that position. So, there seems to be a lot of interest on the Jags’ part in the twice-fired head coach. Kelly has not interviewed for a job with another team this offseason.

The Jaguars agreed to retain Hackett, who took over the OC job from Greg Olson after the team fired Olson during the season. However, it appears Hackett will have to vie with other candidates to become the full-time Jags OC. This marks the first official interview the Jaguars have conducted for the OC job.

Despite being fired after only one season with the 49ers, Kelly did help Colin Kaepernick have a better season than he did in 2015. Although, the coach’s career arc has pointed downhill since his debut campaign with the Eagles that ended in the playoffs. But the Jaguars saw Blake Bortles regress this season and could be looking for an unorthodox voice to help the former No. 3 overall pick. Kelly, who was eyeing NFL OC jobs shortly after being fired, has evidently piqued the revamped Jags decision-making group’s curiosity.

New Jaguars executive Tom Coughlin attempted to hire Kelly as an offensive assistant before he took the job at Oregon, as Adam Caplan of ESPN.com points out (on Twitter). Kelly’s Eagles went 4-1 against Coughlin’s Giants.

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