Eying future QBs? Chip Kelly says no

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Eying future QBs? Chip Kelly says no
October 30, 2013, 12:30 pm
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Through eight games, Chip Kelly has already been forced to use three different quarterbacks. (USA Today Images)

You guys can talk about Teddy Bridgewater, Marcus Mariota and Tajh Boyd all you want.

Chip Kelly says figuring out who the Eagles’ 2014 quarterback will be is the farthest thing from his mind.

“That’s not our mentality,” Kelly said. “Our mentality is: ‘Who are we playing right now?’ And I think it’s a disservice to those other players on the team and it’s a disservice to our fans if I’m thinking about who our quarterback is going to be next year.

“I’m thinking about beating who we’re playing this week. We’re playing the Oakland Raiders and that’s it. That’s the deal.”

Kelly has been forced to use three quarterbacks the first half of his first season as an NFL head coach, and none of them -- Michael Vick, Nick Foles and Matt Barkley –- has made a case for himself as the Eagles’ proverbial Quarterback of the Future.

Vick is 33 years old, hasn’t won a playoff game in nine years, hasn’t been able to stay healthy and isn’t under contract after this year.

Foles was very good against the Giants and Buccaneers, but he was so historically ineffective vs. the Cowboys that it raised serious questions about his future.

And it’s too soon to draw any conclusions about Barkley, but he has turned the ball over on five of his 10 drives and has yet to generate a point.

The combination of the Eagles’ quarterback inconsistency since Donovan McNabb left after the 2009 season and the projected deep quarterback draft this spring has sparked constant speculation about who will lead the Eagles in the future and what the Eagles will do to try to increase their odds of getting one of the top QBs.

But Kelly, who coached Mariota for two years at Oregon, rejected the notion that he’s coaching 2013 with an eye on 2014 and the future.

So if you want the Eagles to start tanking games to get a better draft pick, you’re going to be disappointed.

“We’re all about winning games,” Kelly said before practice Wednesday. “It’s about beating Oakland. That’s it. It’s a one-week season, and that’s all it is. Last week, it was about beating the Giants.

“There wasn’t, ‘Hey what are we going to be like next year and let’s go see if we can activate [practice squad quarterback] G.J. [Kinne] and throw him in the mix.’”

With a few more wins, the 3-5 Eagles will likely play themselves out of range of Bridgewater, Mariota and Boyd, projected as the top three quarterbacks in next year’s draft and possibly the first three picks.

But Kelly said he can’t afford to think long-term.

“It’ll never be that way,” he said. “We’re trying to win the game we’re playing this week, and if we start planning long-term, I may not be here long-term, you know what I’m saying? So let’s go beat Oakland.”

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