LeSean McCoy feels vindicated by Chip Kelly's recent failures

LeSean McCoy feels vindicated by Chip Kelly's recent failures

LeSean McCoy was a guest on NFL Network's Good Morning Football on Friday to discuss his career, the Super Bowl, and his ol’ pal Chip Kelly. 

McCoy took an opportunity to relish in the memory of his last matchup with Kelly and the 49ers. He wanted his former coach to remember his performance this past season since he could not take full advantage when he played against the Eagles after Kelly traded him. 

In 2015 against the Eagles, McCoy rushed for 74 yards on 20 attempts and didn't score. It was a big improvement in 2016 against the 49ers as he racked up 140 yards with three TDs on 19 carries. 

“(When) we played them in Philly (in 2015) I was kind of still banged up,” McCoy said. “I couldn't give him my full potential that game. So, I made sure this last one we played them, I gave them the real Shady. The one he remembers playing with.”

It was a given that Shady never wanted to leave Philadelphia — he criticized Kelly incessantly after the trade — and he still holds strong toward his feelings for the now unemployed coach.

“I was honest,” McCoy said. “But you know what? I kind of noticed that after the fact when he had that team (in Philadelphia) go down and they fired him and (he) went to San Fran and the same thing happened over there, then it's like, 'OK, maybe LeSean McCoy was right.' But it took forever, right? So I took a year or two just to get the heat and the backlash. But I'm an honest person.

“Only thing I can think about and tell you the truth is this: Where I'm at now, I'm with a team I'm happy to be with. ... They've been special to me, very special, in a good way, so I'm happy.”

The trade was even more of a slap in the face to McCoy because he was shipped off for this "no-name" linebacker in Kiko Alonso, a former Orgen Duck under Kelly. 

“And at the time, I didn't know who that was ... I just didn't understand it," he said. "Usually when guys get traded it's a money situation or their game has declined, and those two things just weren't off.”

In 2017, McCoy will be reunited with another one of his former coaches from the Eagles in Sean McDermott. The former defensive cordinator was named the head coach of the Bills on Jan. 11 following the dismissal of Rex Ryan.

“I like Sean. Even when I played in Philly he was there and he had heart, I liked him," McCoy said. "I think kind of back then he had to get the scapegoat. Something is going on, you know how it is, you gotta bring in somebody. He's tough, he's honest and he's fair. 

"And not to say anything bad about Rex because I love Rex. I was actually behind Rex's stay. I think it's more the players, we need to step up more. But I think that Sean is a guy who will get it done.”

Shady will be like every other mere mortal on Feb. 5 when it comes to viewing the Super Bowl. The 28-year-old offered his thoughts on the Patriots and his respect for Brady, given they are in the same division. 

“I'm actually happy for Tom,” he said. “Now, I play for Buffalo, don't get me wrong, same division. But I love a player who is building on his legacy. It would mean a lot to see him win another championship. 

“The way they play; they’re coached very well. (Bill) Belichick does a great job with them. I think (Malcolm) Butler is the X-factor. He plays man. A lot of people don’t know about him but he’s a heck of a player. He shut down one of the best receivers in the game, Antonio Brown.”

On the other hand, Shady thinks Matt Ryan and the Falcons are in a great position to knock off this Brady-driven dynasty.

“If it comes down to the last minute, you gotta go with Tom,” McCoy said. “But I think overall, I think that the Falcons have more. Even on defense and offense, they have more.

“[Ryan's] just playing lights out. He’s efficient. He’s like that real quarterback. He’s dominant. He looks like Tom. He’s putting the ball on the money. He’s putting his team in the right positions to win games."

Report: Eagles interviewing Bills WRs coach Sanjay Lal Wednesday

Report: Eagles interviewing Bills WRs coach Sanjay Lal Wednesday

The Eagles on Wednesday are interviewing Bills wide receivers coach Sanjay Lal for their opening at that spot, according to ESPN's Adam Caplan.

Caplan reported Tuesday that the Eagles have "strong interest" in Lal to fill the vacancy created by the Greg Lewis firing.

While Lewis, 36, had never been an NFL position coach before the Eagles hired him last offseason, Lal has significant experience.

The 47-year-old just finished his second season as the Bills wide receivers coach and has been a receivers coach in the NFL since 2009. He held the position with the Jets from 2012-14 and with the Raiders from 2009-11. Before that, he was an assistant receivers/quality control coach with the Raiders.

With the Bills' firing of Rex Ryan, their position coaches have uncertain futures.

A big problem with the Eagles' receivers group — aside from an obvious lack of talent — is unfulfilled potential. The Eagles started the season with a first-round pick, two second-round picks and a third-round pick at the position. And the only player who had a good season was Jordan Matthews.

Nelson Agholor, the team's first-round pick from 2015, was slightly better in his second season but wasn't able to come near fulfilling his potential.

Lal should know something about unfulfilled potential. In 2009, his first season as the Raiders' wide receivers coach, the team drafted Darrius Heyward-Bey with the seventh-overall pick. In his first two seasons, Heyward-Bey had numbers worse than Agholor's. But in his third season, and Lal's last with the team, Heyward-Bey caught 64 passes for 975 yards and four touchdowns. It's the best season he's ever had in the NFL.

Maybe the Eagles want to see if Lal could squeeze some production out of their disappointing receivers.

Bills hire Sean McDermott as head coach

Bills hire Sean McDermott as head coach

Update: 5:26 p.m.

ORCHARD PARK, N.Y. -- The Buffalo Bills reached an agreement on Wednesday to hire Sean McDermott to be their next head coach.

The deal was reached shortly after the Bills interviewed McDermott for a second time in eight days. The 42-year-old has no previous head-coaching experience and spent the past six seasons working as the Carolina Panthers defensive coordinator.

McDermott replaces Rex Ryan, who was fired two weeks ago. He becomes the team's ninth head coach since 1999, when Buffalo last made the playoffs under Wade Phillips. The Bills went 7-9 this past season, extending the NFL's longest active playoff drought to 17 years.

McDermott has 18 seasons of NFL experience, spending his first 12 years with the Philadelphia Eagles. He started as a scouting coordinator for two years, then mentored under late defensive coordinator Jim Johnson. He eventually succeeded Johnson in 2009.

He takes over a team in Buffalo that featured the NFL's top running attack but an underperforming defense in two seasons under Ryan.

The Bills defense finished 19th in yards allowed two years straight, and was particularly porous against the run. Buffalo allowed 200-plus yards rushing to opposing running backs three times this season, including twice against Miami's Jay Ajayi.

The offense was inconsistent at times under second-year starter Tyrod Taylor.

Owner Terry Pegula grew so dissatisfied with the defensive meltdowns, he fired Ryan in the week leading up to Buffalo's final game. Ryan was replaced by offensive coordinator Anthony Lynn, who served as interim coach in a season-ending loss to the New York Jets.

Lynn was one of three other candidates to interview for the job besides McDermott.

Lynn was considered an initial front-runner to take over on a permanent basis, before the Bills began leaning toward McDermott, who was the first candidate the team interviewed. The Bills also interviewed Arizona Cardinals offensive coordinator Harold Goodwin and Seattle Seahawks defensive coordinator Kris Richard.

The Panthers enjoyed four straight seasons of being ranked in the NFL's top 10 in fewest yards allowed before taking a step back this season.

Carolina finished 21st in yards allowed, giving up 500-plus yards three times. The pass defense particularly suffered a drop-off following the loss of star defensive back Josh Norman, who signed with Washington in free agency. Carolina's defense was also weakened once star linebacker Luke Kuechly missed the final six games with a concussion.

The Panthers still finished sixth against the run and ranked second with 47 sacks.

In 2015, McDermott oversaw a unit that forced an NFL-leading 39 takeaways and ranked second in yards allowed. The Panthers team went 15-1 and lost to Denver in the Super Bowl.

It's uncertain whom McDermott will hire to oversee Buffalo's offense.

Another major question is McDermott's plans for Taylor.

The Bills restructured the quarterback's contract in August, giving him a five-year extension while retaining the right to opt out of the deal by March.

Potentially complicating matters, Taylor had surgery last week to repair a sports hernia. Next season's portion of the contract, worth about $30 million including bonuses, is guaranteed if Taylor is unable to pass his physical in mid-March, when the deal kicks in.

The Bills also face a potentially significant roster overhaul with 24 players eligible to become free agents this offseason. The group includes cornerback Stephon Gilmore, linebackers Lorenzo Alexander and Zach Brown, and receiver Robert Woods.