NFL Draft: Eagles coach Chip Kelly brings the Pac-12 to Philadelphia
Eagles coach Chip Kelly might not be coaching in the Pac-12 any more, but he'll be coaching plenty of Pac-12 players. In his first draft as an NFL head coach, Kelly and the Eagles spent four of their eight picks on former Pac-12 players.
Former Oregon coach Chip Kelly may not be coaching in the Pac-12 anymore, but he might feel like it once the Eagles draft picks show up for their first practice. Over the three-day NFL Draft, Philadelphia used half of its eight selections on Pac-12 players.
"I think it kind of just happened," Kelly said. "There are a couple top leagues out there -- Pac-12, the SEC, the Big 10, the ACC -- but it wasn't by design that we were targeting one over another."
Kelly and the Eagles drafted 14 percent of all Pac-12 players taken -- four of 28. But Philadelphia's Pac-12 haul didn't include any former Oregon Ducks, although it did include former USC quarterback Matt Barkley, who had a career-day against Oregon last season. Barkley threw for 484 yards and five touchdowns against Kelly's Ducks in a 62-51 Oregon win in November. Barkley threw 12 touchdown passes in four career games against Kelly and Oregon.
Barkley's free fall to the fourth round was one of the biggest stories of the draft. He could have fallen a few picks further if the Eagles had not traded up for him.
The Eagles also picked Oregon-killer Zach Ertz. The Stanford tight end caught 11 passes for 106 yards and a touchdown in 17-14 overtime win over Oregon in November. The loss to Stanford cost Kelly and the Ducks a shot at the national title.
Barring trades or cuts, the Eagles will have at least 14 Pac-12 players on their roster when they begin OTA's on May 13.
Keep your eye on everything NFL by following John Breech on Twitter @JohnBreech.
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