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Chip Kelly fires back, reveals details on strained relationship with Eagles front office

Only hours after Eagles owner Jeffrey Lurie discussed with the press his methodology of testing Chip Kelly in his final year, Kelly responds with his own thoughts on the dysfunctional relationship between the himself and the Eagles front office.

After every failed relationship there are two versions of the story to be told. It was only a matter of a few hours before new San Francisco 49ers head coach Chip Kelly fired off a few indirect rebuttals to Jeffrey Lurie's statements about how his last year unraveled in Philadelphia. If Kelly had his druthers, he probably would have kept quiet about it, but members of the Philadelphia press surrounding Kelly during his interview outnumbered their west coast counterparts and sought answers to Lurie's comments from yesterday. We'll have more on Lurie's comments specifically coming up tomorrow.

The general perception in Philadelphia was that after two winning seasons Kelly wanted total control over the team while maintaining his head coaching position, Lurie has stated as much. Kelly, however stated:

I didn’t like the way it was, but I didn’t ask for anything, It’s [Lurie’s] organization and his team. He can run it however he wants to run it. It wasn’t like I’m walking out the door.

What Kelly didn't like was the firing of VP of player personnel Tom Gamble in 2014. It seems Lurie took that as Kelly wanting the GM responsibilities, yet Kelly said he would have been content with simply the hiring of a GM. Gamble and Kelly have subsequently been happily reunited in Santa Clara and Gamble may even be the biggest reason why Kelly got the job in the first place.

Howie Roseman who was the GM during Kelly's first two years with the Eagles was removed from his position to make way for Kelly, yet still handled player contracts. During that time Kelly and Roseman rarely saw each other let alone talked and used de facto go between Ed Marynowitz, VP of player personnel, to communicate. When asked "Shouldn't there be communication between the cap guy and a personnel guy?" Kelly simply replied, "Yeah, you would think." (h/t Tim Mcmanus)

Roseman who has been on the business side of football throughout his career is a polar opposite of 49ers GM Trent Baalke. Roseman is a finance specialist who doesn't watch practice, akin to Paraag Marathe. Baalke, on the other hand, likes to participate and interact with players during practice, while having a background in scouting. Kelly and Baalke even cheerfully referred to each other as "football guys" in Kelly's introductory press conference which was interpreted in Philadelphia as a dig at Roseman.

Kelly seems happy to have put behind him the "weird situation" of 2015 that was, in hindsight, a recipe for disaster. He complimented the 49ers personnel department, specifically Baalke who he says has a "great feel for how to put together a team." He also expressed how important the trust that exists between the HC and the front office/GM is to the success of the team. For now, the honeymoon phase continues.