The Bills and Browns will interview Chip Kelly on Friday as both teams continue their search for a new head coach.
Kelly’s Oregon team beat Kansas 35-17 in Thursday’s Fiesta Bowl, and now the Ducks coach is expected to be prowling an NFL sideline next year. As we reported Tuesday, Kelly has been attracting attention from across the NFL, with the Eagles, Browns and Bills all said to be interested.
ESPN reports the Bills and Chip Kelly would meet Friday, while The Plain Dealer confirmed Friday’s interview with the Browns. It’s also expected that the 49-year-old will meet with the Eagles at some point in the coming days.
Speaking after his team’s Fiesta Bowl victory, Kelly told reporters:
“I’ll talk to Dave (agent David Dunn) tomorrow. I said I’ll always listen and that’s what I’ll do. I want to get it wrapped up quickly and figure out where I’m going to be.”
Chip Kelly’s record as Oregon coach stands at a formidable 46-7. In four seasons with the Ducks (two of which were spent as offensive coordinator), he’s turned the Ducks into a team with a famously daring approach to offense, leading to high scores and thrilling games. As Stewart Mandel notes at Sports Illustrated:
“The truth is, there’s been a lot of ‘Did that just happen?’ moments during Kelly’s four seasons. He wasn’t the first college coach to run a hurry-up offense or employ the shotgun-spread almost exclusively, but he bundled those elements together to produce what many consider the most unique and exciting brand of football in the country – a source of such curiosity that normally buttoned-up NFL types are now tripping over each other to make it their own.”
Despite his success, Kelly remains admirably grounded. Speaking from the winners’ podium on Thursday evening, the coach was quick to deflect questions about his future in the NFL and credit his players:
“The success of our football program has always been about our guys. It’s an honor that someone would say they want to talk to me about maybe moving on to coach in the National Football League, but it’s because of what those [players] do. So I’ll listen and we’ll see.”
Browns, Eagles and Bills fans, would Chip Kelly be your choice to lead your sides? Over on Twitter, the response seems rather mixed so far:
I would prefer a coach with some familiarity of the NFL. I don’t need my team(Eagles) to be guinea pigs for Chip Kelly’s wonder offense.
— Ike Reese (@Ike58Reese) January 4, 2013
[thinks about Chip Kelly running option pitch on fake punch against Bill Belichick] [claps like a seal]
— Adam Kramer (@KegsnEggs) January 4, 2013
I’ll go on the record since everyone has an option on Twitter in saying that I am not a Chip Kelly fan for #Browns HC.
— Mike Nicholls (@Hotnicks330) January 4, 2013
well that was a dominating performance by oregon chip kelly.. cmon chip u will love it here!!
— michael symon (@chefsymon) January 4, 2013
I’m going to miss Chip Kelly at Oregon. Chip and the Ducks are must-watch TV. Chip Kelly and the Cleveland Browns?Not so much.
— Jim Rome (@jimrome) January 4, 2013