Watch the raw press conference with Eagles owner Jeffrey Lurie.
PHILADELPHIA – Coach firings in the NFL typically happen on Black Monday. That is the Monday following the last week of the regular season, which is just next week.
Eagles owner Jeffrey Lurie decided it was best to release Chip Kelly before the last week of the season to jump-start the new head coach search. Lurie said that he believes the early release would benefit Kelly and make him available to the “marketplace” sooner.
Lurie held numerous player-only meetings with the Eagles over the past few days to see what is best for them.
“I want to hear from the players,” Lurie said. “I want to engage them and have them understand what they felt was lacking. I need to understand, have them understand and take accountability but also, at the same time, be a sponge.”
Kelly, who was also the Eagles’ general manager, had virtually total control over the team. The 26-21 overall coach had the power over who stayed and who left.
Many questioned why Lurie gave such power to a first-time NFL coach after Kelly rid the Eagles of WR DeSean Jackson, RB LeSean McCoy, WR Jeremy Maclin, G Evan Mathis and many more.
“I wanted to make Chip accountable for everything he wanted to have happened,” Lurie said. “One of the ways to make him accountable was to have him make those decisions.”
Lurie mentioned that he had a similar system with former Eagles head coach Andy Reid. Moving forward, Lurie wants to have a more collaborative effort between the powers that be in player personnel and his head coach.
Lurie said hiring Kelly was a risk and not all risks work out.
— Philadelphia Eagles (@Eagles) December 30, 2015
Lurie said the qualities he’s looking for in a new head coach include:
1. A smart and strategic thinker.
2. Someone who interacts well and communicates clearly with the players and front office.
3. Someone who understands how passionate the Philadelphia fan-base is.
4. A coach who is detailed-oriented.
Lastly, Lurie wants something that Kelly seemed to lack… emotion.
“You’ve got to open your heart to players and everybody you want to achieve peak performance from,” Lurie said. “I would call it a style of leadership that values information, all the resources that are provided and at the same time values emotional intelligence.”