Eagles players defend Chip Kelly after failing to make playoffs

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Chip Kelly stood up and took the blame last night for his first losing season as an NFL head coach, saying he and the coaching staff deserve 100 percent of the blame.

“That’s all on my shoulders,” Kelly said. “It’s the same thing I said a year ago, it’s unacceptable. We have got to find a way to do a better job, and we have to put these guys in a better position to make plays. So it’s one hundred percent on my shoulders.”

But the players in the locker room see it differently.

“There are no words for it,” a devastated Riley Cooper said after the 38-24 loss.”We fell short, and it’s no one’s fault but the players. The players are out there playing and are supposed to make plays, and we didn’t do it.”

Jordan Matthews, who has burst for 263 yards and two touchdowns in his last two games, still believes in Kelly, who will more than likely be back in 2016.

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“Coach Kelly gave me an opportunity to play in the NFL,” Matthews said.”He was one of the main guys focused on getting me here. Of course I have confidence in him. Coach Kelly can’t go out there and catch passes. He can’t go out there and tuck the ball. He can’t go out there and play defense. He has to put guys in positions to make plays. We were out there on the field so we have to make it happen.”

The Eagles have had an up and down season to be sure. But it’s hard to blame Saturday’s loss for their playoff elimination in Week 16. With the Redskins leading the division (and playoff bound) at just 8-7, Philly had chance after chance to make a move — and they never really did.

“Our goal every year is to go into the playoffs, win our division and make a run and get hot at the right time,” Zach Ertz, who has posted career highs of 701 yards and nine touchdowns thus far,said.”Obviously, we didn’t do that. I mean, we had so many opportunities this year. It shouldn’t have come down to this game in the first place. We had so many opportunities throughout the season to end the division early. I mean, the Falcons, the Dolphins, there are so many games that I can pinpoint where we didn’t make enough plays to win the game, and ultimately, the same thing happened tonight.”

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