Philadelphia Eagles coach Chip Kelly runs the most frantic practices in the NFL.
“We’re not walking through. We’re running. Always running,” he told MMQB’s Peter King earlier this summer.
Kelly blasts music over the loudspeakers. Players wear tracking devices that lets coaches know how hard they’re working. There’s no standing around. There’s even a drill where five quarterbacks all throw passes at once. The practices are so fast that Philly’s back-ups get twice as many reps as the back-ups on other teams, according to defensive coordinator Billy Davis.
These practices are so elemental to Kelly’s philosophy that it was jarring to hear cornerback Cary Williams criticise his team’s preparation after their 37-34 win over Washington.
The Eagles have trailed by 10 points or more in all three games so far this season. Williams says the hard practices are to blame for the slow starts. Williams told reporters that he wants to practice less (via ESPN):
“I’m just going to be honest with you. It’s hard to go out there and fight for 60 minutes when you’re fighting throughout the week to make it through one practice. I’m not the only one. I’m just the only one that’s man enough to stand up here and talk to y’all. It’s obviously, in my opinion, an issue in our starts.”
“When you don’t have legs, period, it shows up in games, period. Throughout the game, period.”
“Right now, the way we’re doing it is not conducive to success. We play several games in practice. It’s taxing on your body. I’m 30 years old now. I don’t know where I’m going to find that energy. We’ve been able to fight through that as a team, but some modifications need to be made.”
Williams may have just been venting because he was burned by Desean Jackson for a deep touchdown in the second half.
Kelly said on Monday that he’d talk to Williams, but added that his up-tempo practices are the reason his teams have been so fresh in the fourth quarter this year.
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