Tuesday, December 23, 2014

Six Requests For Chip Kelly Against The Giants

(after me comes the flood)
Week 17 against the Giants, in New York, means nothing. There will be no change in meaningful draft pick position, no advantage or disadvantage in winning or losing the game. Oh, and it's the last time we can think abut a local sports franchise that isn't an utter train wreck in the here and now for about nine months. Such a wonderful time to be in the Philadelphia area!

Anyway, let's get some value out of it. Any value.

1) Start Matt Barkley at QB, instead of Mark Sanchez.

When last seen, the USC QB3 was a turnover machine -- and yes, USC QB2 is also a turnover machine. The difference between Barkley and Sanchez is that Barkley might actually stop being that at some point in his life. Let's see if that can be this week, on the road against a quality opponent.

2) Start Chris Polk at RB, instead of LeSean McCoy

I'm going to go for a moment of heresy here... Polk might, just might, be a better RB than McCoy now. He's bigger, stronger, younger, and RB is the NFL position that ages men at a 10X rate. McCoy's poor year is much more likely to be the lack of speed WR2 to stretch the defense, and lack of QB1 to make the defense not stack the box... but if Polk looks a lot better than McCoy, maybe that tells you something valuable for next year. And if someone's dumb enough to trade for a RB in the NFL and give you anything of real value, maybe something highly valuable.

Oh, and if you start McCoy and he gets hurt, the fan base will revolt. Worse than the DeSean Jackson affair. Honest.

3) Start Josh Huff at WR, instead of Riley Cooper.

Just to prove that you can, in fact, do the right thing, rather than just stubbornly hold on to the same bad decision that you made back in training camp. Besides, Huff's shown some signs recently, and Cooper will cost real cash if you keep him next year. Along with making most of our heads explode by, um, keeping Riley Cooper.

4) Try WR Jordan Matthews and DB Brandon Boykin outside of the slot.

Now, I know, too much to ask to bench CB Bradley Fletcher, a man who is doing all he can to be the single biggest scapegoat in this century of Eagle Football. (Hey, have you heard how Fletcher's injured? Give any Eagle Fan two minutes and a blow dart gun.) But at least if we see Odell Beckham Jr. roasting Boykin, or some other draft pick who hasn't gotten off the practice squad all year, we'll have the satisfaction of knowing that the year couldn't have unfolded any other way.

(Left unsaid, because you seemingly have already done it: TE Zach Ertz over Brent Celek. Thanks for that. A few months late, but we get it, Celek's been a good soldier and blocks well.)

5) Call some plays we've never seen.

Remember that swinging gate 2-pont conversion play that bombed utterly in your first game? Let's see it again. The backwards screen play that makes us all wince, mostly because you never have the WR throw a forward pass after it? Roll it out, even though everyone on the other team knows that when Brad Smith is on the field for an offensive snap, it's Shenanigans Time. The 3-man offensive line that splits out the tackle to murder a DB on the bubble screen? Go nuts. Oh, and one more. You have dominant special teams; let them try a fake punt, or onside kick.

Oh, and win the damn game. Somehow. That would be nice, too.

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