Matt Barkley to Eagles, Chip Kelly in fourth round of NFL draft

April 27, 2013

(Elaine Thompson / AP)

One of the big mysteries of the 2013 season surrounds just what kind of offense Chip Kelly will bring from Oregon to the Philadelphia Eagles.

He has quarterbacks Michael Vick and Nick Foles on the roster and then the Eagles went out and added Matt Barkley, the USC quarterback with the first pick of the fourth round (98th overall) in the NFL draft. Barkley, a sure-fire top 10 pick until he opted to return to USC for his senior season, was simply too good to pass up, so the Eagles made a trade to move up and get him. Just what is Kelly thinking, given that Barkley isn’t the kind of mobile quarterback Kelly used with his wide-open offense in Oregon.

“If he can get us in the end zone, he fits [what the team will do],” the Eagles’ coach told the NFL Network. “And Matt Barkley can get you in the end zone. I think a lot of people have assumptions about what we’re looking for in a quarterback. We’re looking for a quarterback who can help us score points and lead us to victories and Matt can do that.”

What exactly did Kelly like about Barkley? “I’m going to steal a quote from [former NFL coach] Sam Rutigliano, who used to say, ‘With a quarterback, it’s like a tea bag. You don’t know what you have till you put it in hot water,’” Kelly said (via Philly.com’s Zach Berman). “And the first time I saw Matt Barkley, he was a true freshman, and he came into Autsen Stadium, which is one of the toughest places to play in the world, and it didn’t phase him a bit.”

Follow @CindyBoren on Twitter and on Facebook.

After spending most of her career in traditional print sports journalism, Cindy began blogging and tweeting, first as NFL/Redskins editor, and, since August 2010, at The Early Lead. She also is the social media editor for Sports.
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