The offense shone in ’13, as Kelly sent five players (Nick Foles, LeSean McCoy, DeSean Jackson, Jason Peters and Evan Mathis) to the Pro Bowl. The team set a franchise record for points scored and total yards gained, and 10 of next year’s 11 starters are under contract already for 2014.
All that being said, Kelly will probably focus on the offensive side of the ball, notably the wide receiver position. Kelly loves offense, and no team can ever have too many weapons. The Eagles will definitely need some defensive upgrades as well, and a proper blend of both offense and defense will put Philadelphia in fine position to repeat as NFC East champions next year.
Chip Kelly needs defensive help, but he's likely to sign a safety in free agency and he's an offensive guy at heart. There are a handful of wide receivers who will likely go in the first round, and Philadelphia gets much more than a consolation prize with Kelvin Benjamin at pick No. 22.
Benjamin is a 6’5” receiver with good speed and athletic ability, and he’s more than enough to replace Riley Cooper should he leave in free agency. Even if Cooper stays, Benjamin won’t lose snaps to Cooper; Benjamin has a skill set that will make him an immediate favorite of Foles.
Benjamin is a deep threat, and he’s a playmaker in the red zone. He totaled 15 touchdowns in 2013, including the game-winner in the national championship with a minute to play. He gives the Eagles another downfield target to go with Jackson.
Cornerback is a much-needed position of need for the Philadelphia Eagles, even with the surprising play from both Cary Williams and Brandon Boykin this season. Boykin is a future Pro Bowler, but Williams’ cap figure for 2014 and then 2015 suggests he will have to restructure his deal soon to remain on the roster.
The Eagles were also exposed when Williams got hurt in the playoff game against the New Orleans Saints and dime corner Roc Carmichael had to go in for a snap. Loucheiz Purifoy would provide immediate depth at the position with the goal that he eventually moves into the starting lineup.
The Philadelphia Eagles need more depth on their defensive line, notably a player who can play both nose tackle and 5-technique end.
DeAndre Coleman is a big man at 6’5” and 320 pounds. He didn’t have a spectacular senior season, but he projects to be a good player at the NFL level. Coleman wouldn’t start for the Eagles, as they have Fletcher Cox and Cedric Thornton entrenched as 3-4 ends, and Bennie Logan is the nose tackle.
Vinny Curry and Damion Square provide the depth on the line, but Square isn’t the ideal nose tackle to spell Logan. Coleman has the size to play directly over the center, and if he is able to occupy double-teams, it will give Cox a better opportunity to get to the quarterback.
The ideal situation is that the Philadelphia Eagles spend an earlier draft pick on a pass-rushing outside linebacker. Trent Cole is on the decline, Connor Barwin is a fine all-around player who isn’t the ideal pass-rusher and Brandon Graham may be traded this offseason.
Jackson Jeffcoat is the son of former NFL player Jim Jeffcoat. This Jeffcoat projects best as a 3-4 outside linebacker, which would make him a situational pass-rusher for the Eagles. Jeffcoat could see his stock rise if he times well at the NFL Scouting Combine.
Depth on the interior offensive line is a necessity for the Philadelphia Eagles this offseason, considering there aren’t many options. Allen Barbre is the top backup, as he can play both tackle and guard, but the team needs another player who can play guard.
Kadeem Edwards is an undersized player who checks in at just 290 pounds. He’s best suited as a center at the NFL level, although he could probably play both guard and center.
Logan Thomas is certainly a project, but Kelly would be fine with that. He’s definitely going to pick a quarterback in this year’s draft—it just depends how high in the draft.
Thomas is a huge man at 6’6” and 260 pounds. He’s extremely raw and runs a lot, which means he’s a good fit for Kelly’s offense. Foles certainly proved that Kelly doesn’t need a running quarterback for his offense to succeed, but Thomas is a long-term prospect for a coach who proved to be a quarterback guru.
Thomas would begin the season as the No. 3 quarterback behind Foles and Matt Barkley, as it is very doubtful that Michael Vick returns in 2014. Thomas isn’t a terrific passer, even struggling at the collegiate level. He tossed just 16 touchdowns to 13 interceptions in his senior season, running for four more. He definitely needs some work to his game, but Kelly would be the guy to work with him.
There’s a chance the Philadelphia Eagles trade Bryce Brown this offseason. He’s not an ideal fit in Kelly’s offense, and he has enough potential and upside that a team may be willing to make him its starter or a part of a two-headed backfield.
Ben Malena would fill the void as the No. 3 running back behind McCoy and Chris Polk. Malena is an undersized back with explosiveness and agility. He’s a poor blocker and would need to work on that to be competent at the NFL level.
Drafting Malena would give the Eagles possible depth at the position, although adding him as a seventh-round pick doesn’t necessarily mean he would even make the roster.