LeSean McCoy is ready to run, but he knows he's going to need some help. As the pre-draft veteran minicamp wrapped up Thursday, the All-Pro running back dished on his impressions of the new-look offense under Chip Kelly and preached his excitement about the abundant opportunities for running backs. The plural there is key though, because McCoy says running the ball under Kelly will require a team effort.
"You're going to need another back in this offense," McCoy said. "This is the kind of offense where it's not a debate, 'Oh, I could do it myself,' because, one, you're going to do more plays than any other offense, even in practice ... For two, the amount of hits. You're running so much. If you're faking it or you're running it, or if it's a pass or not, you're constantly going. I think any back, no matter how great of a shape that he's in, he's going to need some extra help. I know that, and Bryce (Brown) is good enough that he can play. I think every team has two good backs if you look around the league and I think Bryce is good enough and I'm confident in myself that I think us together will work well. In this offense, you need another back. And don't be surprised if Chris Polk gets some carries because you're running so much it's like a freaking track meet. It's like a relay, you need extra guys."
After his record-setting 2011 season, McCoy took a small step back in 2012, thanks in part to a few injuries that kept him out of four games. Fully healthy, McCoy expects that even though he'll be sharing some of the load, 2013 will be a productive one for the fifth-year running back.
"I think it's a different offense for sure and I think it fits me," said McCoy. "The ability to get me open, in open space and using me in the passing game. It's creative the way they use the backs, utilizing us in different ways to get us in open space, pick our own holes out, things like that. It's like a zone read, so everything's a read, I can go back side, far side, wherever. I think that fits me best."
While McCoy says Kelly's tempo fits him best, he also said it will lead to the team being the most fit.
"Well, for one, we'll be in shape. I think we'll be in the best shape in the league for sure," McCoy said. "Just the fast pace. There's never a time when we're breaking. We hustle to working out, lifting weights, everything. Even the meetings are fast. That high tempo, that high pace is a different presence to the defense because you get those 30 seconds of rest, you look to see what personnel they're bringing in. In this offense, we're shifting, we're moving and as soon as you get tackled there's no celebration after the play, it's strictly get the next play and let's go. I think I want to say by the second or third quarter, teams will be tired. As you've seen at Oregon, that's really how they won a lot of their games, by scoring points so fast. As a defense, you don't really get a chance to adjust because you're moving so much."
Amid that confidence from McCoy and the rest of the Eagles though, there is a sense of intrigue about seeing what they're practicing put into use in real time. So while the first three days of practice under Kelly have been productive, there's still a long way to go before everything is clicking for the Eagles.
"I have confidence for sure, just from seeing it and believing in it," McCoy said. "But I think you kind of get that confirmation when you go out and play against a defense, or even your defense in camp. And if it's successful then, it (gives you) more assurance like, 'Oh, this is going to work.' ... You get that feel where you're still curious because you haven't done it yet in the NFL but every day you see it and it looks promising."
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