It seems that the angry tweets and Facebook updates of fans were heard: The Philadelphia Eagles have released embattled coach Chip Kelly.
Kelly faced blistering criticism as the Eagles saw a 6-9 record this season, the second year in a row the team failed to make it to the playoffs. During his tenure, Kelly made several controversial moves, including trading away LeSean McCoy and not bringing back Jeremy Maclin.
Yesterday, Kelly insisted that he was “not thinking about” his record. “It is just where we are. And our goal was to make the playoffs, and we had an opportunity on Saturday to do that,” Kelly said, “andwe didn’t do it.”
Kelly lamentedthat the entire team was “just disappointed as a group that we didn’t fulfill our goal – and our goal was to make it to the playoffs this year.”
“We appreciate all the contributions that Chip Kelly made and wish him every success going forward,” Eagles owner Jeffrey Lurie said in an intial statement announcing the release.
Later, Lurie posted a message on the team’s website, “I spent the last three seasons evaluating the many factors involved in our performance as a team. As I watched this season unfold, I determined that it was time to make a change.”
Lurie added that the team also released Ed Marynowitz, vice president of player personnel.
“As we move foward,” Lurie said, “the search for a new head coach will begin and will be led by myself, Don Smolenski and Howard Roseman. To the extent that we are able, we will try to keep you informed as we go through this process.”
The move takes effect immediately, with offensive coordinator Pat Shurmur acting as interim coach for Sunday’s game against the New York Giants.