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Now this is a surprise: Chip Kelly turned down the Eagles days ago.
Update, 12:22 p.m. ET: This is official, according to PhiladelphiaEagles.com. There's no article at their site yet.
Chip Kelly will be the next coach of the Philadelphia Eagles, according to ESPN's Chris Mortensen (and FOX's Jay Glazer confirms). This comes less than two weeks after Kelly turned down the Eagles to remain at Oregon.
Chip Kelly is the new coach of the Philadelphia Eagles, according to league sources. No announcement yet.— Chris Mortensen (@mortreport) January 16, 2013
Yes I can confirm Chip Kelly is going to Eagles.— Jay Glazer (@JayGlazer) January 16, 2013
This also comes just after the Eagles' pursuit of BCS National Championship participant Brian Kelly ran cold and nothing else of note presented itself. The Bears are out here hiring CFL coaches. Desperate times call for making one last run at the one that got away, perhaps?
The hang-up between Philly and Chip Kelly was believed to be roster control, as it was a year ago with the Buccaneers. A college coach is used to having complete control over his own roster, while NFL franchises aren't set up quite the same way. If that's the thing that's changed, then there you go.
Kelly interviewed with the Eagles, Browns, and Buffalo Bills several times in the days following Oregon's 35-17 win over Kansas State in the Fiesta Bowl.
His exit would mean the stablest coaching staff in college football would finally get a major shakeup, though it's believed offensive coordinator Mark Helfrich will take over the head coaching job.
In four seasons in charge in Eugene, Kelly guided the Ducks to a 46-7 record, three Pac 10/12 titles, and four BCS bowl appearances. Known for his innovative, high-tempo spread offense, Kelly has been rumored to be headed to the NFL for some time now. He reportedly came close to accepting the head coaching position with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers one year ago, but backed out and returned for another year at Oregon.
Kelly would replace the departed Andy Reid, who was fired after 14 years in Philadelphia.