Archived Story

Eagles hire Kelly as new coach

Published 1:42am Thursday, January 17, 2013

PHILADELPHIA (AP) — Moments after Chip Kelly’s plane landed, he was handed a new Eagles visor and received a warm greeting from fans gathered at the airport.

Welcome to Philadelphia, Coach.

The Eagles hired Kelly on Wednesday, just 10 days after he decided to stay at Oregon. The 49-year-old Kelly, known as an offensive innovator, becomes the 21st coach in team history and replaces Andy Reid, who was fired on Dec. 31 after a 4-12 season.

He’ll be introduced at a news conference Thursday.

“The challenge is what I was excited about and that’s why I came,” Kelly told a group of reporters upon landing in Philly. “I was sold on the Eagles the first time I met them, it was my ties to Oregon that made it hard. But the Eagles are the Eagles. This is the NFL.

“My dream is to just win, and with the Eagles, this was the best opportunity for me to win. I never thought a long time ago that I was going to be able to coach in the NFL but I’m excited about the opportunity.”

Kelly, who was 46-7 in four years at Oregon, interviewed with the Eagles, Cleveland Browns and Buffalo Bills in a two-day span.

after leading the fast-flying Ducks to a victory over Kansas State in the Fiesta Bowl Jan. 3.

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