Philadelphia Eagles 2015 Innovations


Jul 26, 2014; Philadelphia, PA, USA; Philadelphia Eagles head coach Chip Kelly watches while his team warms up at the start of training camp at the Novacare Complex. Mandatory Credit: Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports

Philadelphia Eagles 2015 Innovations

It’s been two years of Philadelphia Eagles head coach Chip Kelly’s offense, and some think that it’s already due for innovation.   But keep in mind, Chip doesn’t experiment on a drawing board.  He sees what works on a field of play, and then integrates that with his offense.

Let’s explore which innovations Chip Kelly actually brought to the NFL, and then speculate on any new innovations occurying in the world of sports that might catch his eye.

More from Eagles News

Chip Kelly: The Innovator

The buzz around the NFL was the changes to the Philadelphia Eagles practice.  Many of the changes were procedural – but had much more to do than just a cosmetic change:

Constant music paired with training session at rapid pace repetitions.  Separate “instructional” periods. Lots of repetitions.  Use of training “aids” such as the football with the rubber band, use of fly swatter defenders, use of individually processed nutritional supplements, use of individual training monitors to assure that no player was “taxed” and placed more at risk.

These innovations all began in the practice setting before a single play was drawn out and drilled.  These innovations occurred in training camp, and with the exception of connective tissue and skeletal injuries, have been remarkable in the results experienced in two years.  In fact, the results have been so pronounced, that many other teams are incorporating elements of the Eagles process into their own regiment.

But following the leader only assures you that your view will never change.  You will always be looking to see what the leader does from behind – and then try to emulate the process and the results.

But Chip Kelly doesn’t wait for someone to introduce something new into the NFL.  His research goes internationally, and considers all sports situations where new technology can give positive results.  So I am putting you on the panel of “sport innovator” today, and giving you a shot to consider some up to date sports innitiatives (yes, this has not been easy).  So these are the categories where some of the most promising progress has been made.

Live Feed

Record for every NFL team based on their current odds as favorites or underdogs
Record for every NFL team based on their current odds as favorites or underdogs /


  • 10 best individual player rivalries in NFL historyFanSided
  • 5 must-win games for the Dallas Cowboys in 2023FanSided
  • Predicting each division winner for the 2023 NFL seasonWith the First Pick
  • Former Lion Ndamukong Suh is in absolutely no hurry to sign with a new teamSideLion Report
  • NFL rumors: All-Pro DT plans to make free agency suitors wait for himFanSided
  • (1) Sports Psychology

    When you think about Psychology, you think of mental illness, or more politically correct, behavioral medicine.  But there are healthy components to sports psychology which is only now being treated.  The anxiety felt before competition can prove to be a detriment.  The discipline required to focus in moment, to shrug off a failed attempt and limit the celebration of a successful attempt.  And finally, the psychology of motivation, and how do you stay “hungry” even when you have achieved the goal you set out to do.

    All of these questions are being addressed by new initiatives in Sports Psychology.  Now known as Sport and Performance Psychology, this is the science that aligns an athletes mental state with his physical conditioning – to elevate the likelihood that a gifted athlete will realize those talents in sport achievement.

    There are a number of new programs both internationally and domestic touting these innovations with varying success.   But as I learned from numerous websites about the process – the smart integration of a mental skills professional into your coaching program can give both professionals and coaches a distinct performance edge.   And we know that Chip Kelly loves to gain “the edge”.  Look for this to be a possible upgrade in the Eagles training arsenal in 2015.

    (2) Training Associations/Partners

    When you think about training at the gym, the first thought are the lonely late night hours or the up before the sun wiping sleep from your eyes.   If you are like most persons, the success rate if you try to “go it alone” is not even 50% likely to last six months.

    But as you pair up and maintain training partners, your perspective changes.   Humans are clannish and competitive by nature.  Pairing up with someone to train gives you the incentive to do so when you’d rather not, and the competitive edge to make the most of any training that you do engage in.

    Most professional athletes do so willingly, and “form up” in workout groups regardless of the official stance of the organization.   And in many situations, the teams are prohibitted from organizing players during the off season in any way that could be interpreted as direct training or coaching supervision.

    But once training camp opens, teams have free access with players.   In doing so, pairing a veteran with a rookie.  Pairing an offensive tackle with a tight end.  Pairing a quarterback with a center.   Any “association” in a training scenario carries over to the playing field.   It would not take much to leap from a group practice to some type of organized structure of pods, or smaller training groups.

    Think back to the off season training sessions hosted by Donovan McNabb with his receivers, but now throw in a center and some cornerbacks.  You get the picture.

    (3) Mind techniques – Yoga and Martial Arts.  

    If Sports Psychology is evolving to keep athletes in a good state of mind, then yoga and martial arts training is getting the mind there in the first place.  Yoga and martial arts use different approaches to achieve a similar goal, train the mind to resist distraction.  Yoga involves various states of meditation and repetitious recitation of sounds.    Martial arts involves deliberately training the body to achieve precise movements and then incorporating those movements into both offensive and defensive situations.

    How does that benefit the modern day pro football player?  Precision in body movements ensures consistency.   Focusing minds ensures maximizing the output of a play.  Bottom line?  If you can think in a more focused way, you will be likelier to have a positive result.  With the number of plays increasing both offensively and defensively in a Chip Kelly coached game, improving the results of each play yields geometric results.

    The Philadelphia Eagles were much more solid of a football team than some fans want to give credit for.   Running 20-12 in the past two seasons, they have taken their game to the “next level”.   Now, the team, and specifically head coach Chip Kelly, will be looking to improve on that result.

    Time to innovate.

    Next: Is Chip Kelly the Eagles' Worst Enemy?

    More from Inside the Iggles