Red Zone

Will Andy Reid have an advantage against his former team? Eagles coach Chip Kelly weighs in

Updated: 2013-09-17T18:59:18Z

By RANDY COVITZ

The Kansas City Star

The Philadelphia Eagles replaced Andy Reid with former Oregon coach Chip Kelly, who is off to a 1-1 start as Reid returns to Philly on Thursday night with his 2-0 Chiefs.

Will Reid, the Eagles’ coach for 14 years, have an advantage because of his familiarity with Philadelphia’s personnel?

“I would think anybody that understands personnel … Andy was here for a long time with those guys,” Kelly said Tuesday. “So if you know what they’re good at. But he doesn’t know our scheme and how we deploy those guys. So he may have little ins and outs. There is a familiarity. He’s familiar with (linebacker) Trent Cole. He’s familiar with (linebacker) DeMeco (Ryans) and familiar with those guys.

“But the scheme defensively has changed. The scheme offensively has changed. The scheme (on) special teams has changed. So maybe from how fast a guy is to some of those things from a physical standpoint, I know he’s probably got an intimate knowledge from the guys on the team.”

More questions and answers with Kelly:

•  How did Andy Reid help you become more incorporated? What advice has he been able to give you?

“He hasn’t given me any. I talked to Andy when I got the job, and he said to be yourself. I told him I had big shoes to fill, and he said you’ll do a good job, and that was it.

•  When you look at what Andy’s doing in Kansas City, how much has he changed and how much has he stayed the same?

A. “He’s added the pistol formation. He brought Chris Ault from Nevada. So they’re running some pistol plays. I think that’s playing to Alex Smith’s strength. I think Alex is a mobile quarterback and really smart guy. So I think that fits with him. But I think that’s probably a little bit different. Some of the passing concepts are similar in terms of what he did here.

“… Defensively they’re radically different because they run a 3-4 scheme. … So that’s different. But offensively what’s a little different than what he had done in the past was the pistol stuff, and they ran some zone-read stuff against the Cowboys.

•  What’s made the Chiefs’ defense so effective?

“They’ve done a good job of matching their personnel to what they can do. An outstanding nose guard (Dontari Poe) who is really playing very, very well right now. Two really good outside linebackers in Tamba Hali and Justin Houston. They were a 3-4 team last year, and I think they stayed with that. But they’ve got some personnel on that side, Eric Berry, Brandon Flowers, Dontari Poe, Houston, Hali, Tyson Jackson, there is some talent on the defensive side of the ball. And Bob Sutton is a really, really good defensive coach. He’s putting those guys in positions to make plays.”

•  With Andy coming in on Thursday, does it hold any meaning for you?

“Yeah, I have great respect for Andy. He was the head coach here for 14 years, and if you’re a coach in the NFL, anybody that coaches at one spot for 14 years you look to them and say, holy smokes. You just walk down the hallways and look at the division championships won here … conference championships and what he’s done. He’s had a huge impact on this organization, and I’ve got a ton of respect for him. … I’ve got all the respect in the world for him. It’s exciting to go get a chance to go compete against him and it should be a lot of fun.”

To reach Randy Covitz, call 816-234-4796 or send email to rcovitz@kcstar.com. Follow him at twitter.com/randycovitz.

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