Chip Kelly didn’t lose the game, he lost the locker room.

at Lincoln Financial Field on November 22, 2015 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.
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Today saw the Eagles fall to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in what can only be described as embarrassing. The crushing 45-17 loss was the biggest of the Chip Kelly era so far, but the game was lost before it even started.

Over the last eight weeks or so there have been countless rumours and reports of players becoming unhappy with their personal situation in Philadelphia, whether that be amount of touches or even amount of action seen completely. But the troubles all date back to before the season began.

We have already posted numerous articles on how Chip ripped out the heart of the team with the intention of replacing it with a new heart, but it hasn’t quite clicked yet. But it’s worth a mention, the core of this Eagles team was destroyed in the blink of an eye and replaced with new shiny shiny parts that need quite a lot of oil before they begin to work.

As the losses mounted  up, the excuses began to run out. There was only so many more times we could stand hearing Chip Kelly say “execute” or “a few plays away” before we decided to run onto the field ourselves..oh wait, somebody already did.

But then came the chemistry issues. First it was the turn of DeMarco Murray who openly said he wanted more snaps despite having no real weapon of persuasion. Regardless the fluttering of the eyelids worked and his touches increased. The one-two punch was finally beginning to wreak havoc before Ryan Mathews went down with concussion..and then things got messy.

All we have heard all season long is the “one-two punch” whilst Darren Sproles has been sat in the shadows. He addressed the media and stated he too was unhappy about the amount of touches he was receiving and how he wants to be a bigger part of the Offense. Funnily enough, Kenjon Barner said the same thing.

Just whenever this team got rolling, something would happen. Hicks was at the top of his game getting his first career #HicksSix..out for the season. Sam Bradford was looking increasingly impressive in the pocket and looking more dangerous than ever….separated shoulder. Offensive Line begins to click….Peters is out for a few games.

It’s in those moments of adversity, the players calling for more snaps, the injuries to key pieces, the inconsistencies, the losses..that a COACH rallies his team together. A COACH finds the best in a tough situation and inspires hope and confidence into declining players.

The Colts are a perfect example. No Andrew Luck? No problem. The Indianapolis outfit saw a wide open gap in their division and capitalised heavily, overthrowing the Falcons in an impressive victory.

Could the Eagles do the same? No. The players stepped out onto the field and the first thing I noticed was how quiet the stadium was. The fans weren’t cheering, they weren’t making noise and quite frankly they paid for their ticket they have every right to remain silent..especially when there’s nothing to cheer for.

But it set a tone and the players followed. It was eery. The stadium could have been mistaken for a library and the players weren’t playing as the Eagles..they weren’t playing as the gritty underdogs that fans love them for, they were just..playing.

Even on the first fumble, no boo’s, nothing. The first touchdown provoked a mild response but it was dull. The team felt it too, everything was contained..calm, cautious. The fans and players knew that this bright start was soon to fade. You could see it in the eyes of Ertz as he dropped his first pass and in the body language of Sanchez as the accuracy levels dropped rapidly.

If the signs weren’t already there what cements this theory is the late interception from Mark Sanchez. He immediately turned to blame Darren Sproles and the two had a vicious argument off camera. Not on the sidelines like we have seen weekly across the league when tensions rise..but on the field.


1) The interception was NOT down to Darren Sproles, just the incoherence of Sanchez.

2) This is the first time I have ever seen players argue like that under Chip Kelly.

Yes players argued over bad plays but it helped the team and was done out of passion this was a flat out argument in bad taste out of frustration.

Other than a few big hustles from Nolan Carroll and some big yardage early on, this team was didn’t have a heart. Why? Because Chip Kelly ripped it out at the start of the season.

Their coach is so adamant that the system is fine that he disregards individual errors and will not change his plan to eradicate them..leaving players disgruntled when they appear a game later.

Those adverse moments were not dealt with by Kelly. It’s that simple. This wasn’t a team performance and you could tell. The fire was simply non existent as the players are losing both faith and hope in a Coach that refuses to address the issues that condemn the team week in and week out.

After the game, Darren Sproles and Kiko Alonso were among others who refused to talk to the media. This is a frustrated, angry and upset group of players who as a group are crumbling.

Chip Kelly suffered his biggest ever loss tonight..and it wasn’t the game, it was the locker room.



Update: We aren’t the only ones who appear to have this concern..

Mandatory Photo Credit: Getty Images, November 22, 2015Credit: Elsa