Chip Kelly isn’t coming to Philadelphia solely for his offensive innovation and prowess. Rather, the new Eagles head coach is coming to the team to rebuild the entire franchise in all three phases of the game.
Not enough attention has been given to what Kelly’s plans for the future of the team’s defense entail. We’ve heard rumors of a 3-4, and we’ve heard rumors of a hybrid. Others have speculated that Kelly will not switch to the 3-4 for a number of reasons. Perhaps the most prevalent of these is that Kelly does not have the personnel right now on the team to successfully convert the defense.
However, over the last few seasons, the NFL has completely transformed itself into an offensive league. With only a few exceptions, the successful NFL franchises have adapted to this offensive switch by implementing the 3-4.
For example, the Houston Texans were stuck in a rut of mediocrity for years. They had maintained a semblance of competitiveness on the shoulders of Arian Foster and Andre Johnson, but they were among the NFL’s worst defensively. That is, of course, until Wade Phillips became the team’s defensive coordinator and implemented the 3-4.
Since then, the Texans defense has been among the best in the NFL, and the team has been a contender.
What Phillips did was get rid of the players he felt were expendable in that system. The Texans let Mario Williams walk and traded DeMeco Ryans.
What Chip Kelly should do is bring in a 3-4 and tie up the defensive loose ends.