Offseason Playbook: Eagles

A look at Philadelphia's philosophy, team needs and a key free-agent move

Originally Published: March 11, 2013
By Gary Horton and Field Yates | ESPN Insider
Chip Kelly Rich Schultz/Getty ImagesAll eyes will be on new Philadelphia Eagles head coach Chip Kelly.

In a new offseason series, Insider takes an in-depth look at NFL teams before free agency begins March 12. What is each team's philosophy on offense and defense, biggest needs and one player who could make for an ideal signing in free agency?

Team philosophies

Offense -- A lot of people assume that new head coach Chip Kelly will install an offense with similarities to the one that he ran at Oregon, but that is not necessarily the case. Early indications are that the fast-paced unique Ducks offense will only be a part of the new Eagles attack and Kelly seems to be a guy who will adjust this philosophy to better fit the NFL. A big adjustment for this new offense will be pass protection, which will be a challenge for Kelly. Bringing in former Cleveland Browns head coach Pat Shurmur will really help because he is a strong run game advocate. We will see combo blocking looks, mostly between the tackles, with more heavy formations, likely using multiple tight end sets and a lead fullback. The passing game will be creative with the screen pass as part of the offense, and play-action off of the running game should be productive. This will be a hybrid offense and the creativity will be fun to watch.

Gary Horton spent 10 years in the NFL as a scout and another 10 years at the college level as an assistant coach and recruiter. He is the founder and most seasoned member of the Scouts Inc. staff, and his extensive experience at all levels of football make him an excellent talent evaluator.
Field Yates has previous experience interning with the New England Patriots on both their coaching and scouting staffs. A graduate of Wesleyan University (CT), he is a regular contributor to ESPN Boston's Patriots coverage and ESPN Insider.