Philadelphia Eagles News

Quotes: Head Coach Chip Kelly

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Q. LB Mychal Kendricks said that he felt good enough running around yesterday, might be able to practice today. Is that going to be the case?

COACH KELLY: We'll see what he can do. He did run around a little bit yesterday, and then they'll monitor him as he goes through today. So, I don't have any other update; that's exactly what he just said, so we'll see what he can do.

Q. You have spoken about how highly you thought of Giants WR Odell Beckham Jr. in the draft last year. Was a trade possible at all, in terms of getting up --

COACH KELLY: No.

Q. Is it something you explored?

COACH KELLY: There was no trade.

Q. Beckham's not practicing again today. What's the approach, from your standpoint, when you have a guy; I'm sure it happens every week, where you have to monitor whether he's going to play or not?

COACH KELLY: Yeah, our approach is he's playing; that's our approach. We'll see 13 on Monday night. [He's] a very competitive player, know him very well. He's going to play against us.

Q. You have let players in the past play through some pretty significant injuries, for example, former Eagle and current Indianapolis Colt, Todd Herremans, last year. What's your theory in gauging that when sometimes players maybe don't push themselves coming back from injury?

COACH KELLY: There's no theory with mine; it's all done through the athletic training room and our doctors. I don't weigh in on any injuries. That's not my expertise, and that's up to those guys. I don't weigh in one way or another on any of that stuff.

Q. So that final decision never comes down to the head coach?

COACH KELLY: It never comes down to the head coach, never should come down to the head coach. I'm not in charge; I'm not a medical doctor, so I have never cleared anybody to play and never will clear anybody to play.

Q. Then it's between the player and the trainer, then, to decide --

COACH KELLY: The doctor, not the trainer, it's the doctor. The doctor says who plays and who doesn't play.

Q. How has CB Byron Maxwell looked over these past few weeks?

COACH KELLY: I think Byron's played well in the last couple weeks. [He's] getting settled, getting an understanding of what we are doing defensively, but I thought he's played well in the last couple of weeks.

Q. I know we've said that running backs coach Duce Staley handles all of the running back rotations, but if RB Ryan Mathews keeps playing really well, do you guys, as a team, have to make a concerted effort to get --

COACH KELLY: We just work on a daily basis here, so I'm not concerned with -- you know, we'll see, you have no idea. That's why I'm never hypothetical guy. Ryan could be the only healthy back in the second quarter Monday night, so we don't ever have conversations about what happens if 'this' happens or 'that' happens. It's just you got to take it as it comes.

Q. I got a Friday question here; you're growing a little scruff?

COACH KELLY: It's efficient; you only have to shave once a week [laughter]. Later in the week we have more time.

Q. LB Jordan Hicks has played, I think, more snaps than any other inside linebacker for you guys. Have there been instances where he's been in charge of running the show, getting the signal?

COACH KELLY: Yeah, there have been. He gets the -- when [LB] DeMeco [Ryans] is out, really he's the guy making the calls when we are in a lot of our packages, and he's done a great job with that. He's really in-tune to the game plan every week. I've said it, and I say it as a compliment, since he got here, he's never acted like a rookie; he's just been really mature in his approach and his understanding of what we are trying to do. I know Billy [outside linebackers coach Bill McGovern] and Rick [inside linebackers coach Rick Miller] have extreme confidence in him, so if he's in charge calling everything and making every call, he can certainly do that and has done that.

Q. We've heard the term before 'good route runner' for a wide receiver, but I'm not really sure exactly what that means sometimes. What makes a receiver a very good route runner?

COACH KELLY: I think how crisp and clean they are in their routes, it's not sloppy. If he's supposed to get 16 yards and break at a 45-degree angle, he gets to 16 yards and breaks at a 45-degree angle. He doesn't start rounding his cut at 13 and kind of lean into it or kind of give the route away, in terms of you know, some guys peek and all of a sudden I've got to run a comeback, but at 13 I start looking back, now you've given a clue to the defender. You want the defender to think that you're going vertical and you're running a jet route when you're running a comeback route so to speak. So the guy that can do that, and not everybody can do that, not everybody can run full speed through 16, sink, plant, drive and come back out of a cut. At some point in time, they have to give a tell away to the defensive back to slow themselves down. So the guys that are real good route runners make you think you're doing one thing, when they are actually doing something else.

Q. We have heard that WR Miles Austin is good at that. How has he helped the younger guys in that regard?

COACH KELLY: I just think in Miles' situation, he's got such a vast experience in terms of where he was, and I know he spoke to me about it in terms of he came into the league as an undrafted free agent. He said he learned a lot when he was an undrafted guy, just studying the guys in one-on-ones never getting open. When he was a rookie, he said it was [former NFL WR] Terry Glenn that he watched a lot when he was at Dallas. [He] watched a lot of what [Dallas Cowboys tight end Jason] Witten does in his routes, and really just became a student because he knew he had to be a great route-runner, great guy with releases, for him to make it in the league and understood what it took for him. So, [he] spent a lot of time studying releases; spent a lot of time studying the different techniques and how to run routes so that he could perfect them.

Q. Giants QB Eli Manning has only thrown two interceptions; what has impressed you most about him this year?

COACH KELLY: I just think it's his second year in [Giants offensive coordinator] Ben McAdoo's system and you can see there's a comfort level in Eli in the whole system. Not only has he only thrown two interceptions, he's only been sacked four times. He's getting the ball out of his hand quickly. He can recognize how people are defending their team. If coverage is rolled one way, he's automatically going another way. He doesn't stay on a receiver and say, 'Hey, I've got to throw the ball to this guy, so I'm going to wait for him to get open.' He's rapidly going through his progressions and putting themselves in a really good situation offensively, and they are throwing the ball a ton; he had 41 completions last week. So it's not like some guys aren't throwing a ton of interceptions, but they haven't had a lot of attempts. He's had a ton of attempts, so there have been opportunities to pick and there have been opportunities to sack him, but those haven't happened, because I really think his comfort level is very, very good in that offense right now, especially being in the second year for him.

Q. What makes McAdoo good? Does he have a certain style?

COACH KELLY: No, I think he's a good play caller. I think Ben's got a real good -- I think he understands his system. He doesn't try to do things that are out of what their system is. And there's a lot of multiple -- you've got to have a good quarterback to run the system, but there's multiple guys on each route. There's a lot of five-outs, so there's five eligible receivers, and the thing that happens is when you have a quarterback who can quickly diagnose that this is the coverage and there they are, then bang I'm going over here, even though my initial read may have started over there. And that takes-- it's a special match between a coordinator, a system and the quarterback that can implement that stuff.

Q. What does the Giants defense do well?

COACH KELLY: They are second in the league in run defense. They have done an outstanding job at stopping the rush in the first five games, and they have done it against everybody they have played. They are big inside with [DT Johnathan] Hankins and [DT] Cullen Jenkins in there. Their linebackers are downhill, physical linebackers that are really geared towards stopping the run. I think for that reason, I think a lot of people have tried to throw the ball on them a little bit more just because you may be banging your head against the wall, in terms of trying to run the football against that look. That's the first thing, and I think a lot of coaches on the defensive side of the ball will tell you that, 'Hey, we are going stop the run first, establish what we can do and try to make a team one-dimensional,' and that's how they have been successful on the defensive side.

Q. When you let Todd Herremans and current Denver Bronco offensive guard Evan Mathis go, how much were you relying on guys like T Jason Peters, T Lane Johnson and C Jason Kelce to kind of help whoever would be starting at the guard position?

COACH KELLY: That happens all the time whenever you lose experienced veterans like those guys, you rely on the other experienced veterans to help out. We felt very confident in Jason, Lane and Kelc that those guys could foster the younger players that were going to come in there and give them the experience and the knowledge that they have and share that with them.

Q. I heard before that the tight end position on field goals is one of those thankless positions in football; do you agree with that, and why is it?

COACH KELLY: I think the entire field goal unit itself is a thankless position because -- and why do I believe that, is that basically your job is to put both hands on the ground, close your eyes and let people take a running start at you. And the only way you ever get noticed is if you get knocked backwards and the ball gets blocked.  So, no one ever says, when someone hits a 52-yarder to win a game, 'Boy, what a great protection by the right tight end on that play.' You don't notice them. The only time you do notice them is when the ball is blocked. So those guys in those situations, whether it be the guards through the tight ends, everybody in that front that's protecting on the field goal or the extra point, it's really kind of a thank -- not a lot of guys want to sign up for that. You put a 'Job Wanted' [sign] up there and just said, 'Hey, here's a job: You get to put your hand on the ground and have someone 320 pounds run full speed and knock you over; and if you do, you're not good at it, just stand your ground', not a lot of guys want to sign up for that job. But, it's necessary in terms of how our game is played.

Q. It seems like you're not afraid to use starters on special teams, more than most coaches maybe.

COACH KELLY: I don't know about more than most because we haven't -- I think with the roster you have to. Now, we'll never have a starter that's a four-core special teams guy, but if a [S] Malcolm Jenkins can be a kickoff-cover guy and we can get one out of Malcolm, or we can get something out of a [CB] Nolan Carroll, or we can get something out of [DB] Walter Thurmond, you share that through your starters. Coop [WR Riley Cooper] is playing wing on our punt team. I think just with the numbers at 46, you have to do that. If not, I don't think you're going to be successful, from a special teams standpoint, if you are just continuing using just the backups and always kind of in, then you're going to be worn down a little bit. I think we try to rotate those guys a little bit. A lot of it, you'll see, we get different gunners out there, if you're punting a lot and guys are covering three or four kicks, it makes it difficult now, so you have to be able to rotate and keep those guys fresh as you kind of go through that.

Q. How has K Caleb Sturgis looked during this past week?

COACH KELLY: Been great. Hasn't missed a kick.

Q. Hasn't missed a kick?

COACH KELLY: This week? Yeah. We haven't kicked yet [laughter], so hasn't missed a kick; we'll go today.

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