By Andrew Porter

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — It was the key play of the game.

Trailing 17-10 with 50 seconds remaining in the first half, the Philadelphia Eagles faced a crucial 4th-and-inches from the Arizona Cardinals’ 7-yard line. A field-goal attempt was never in Chip Kelly’s thought process.

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“I didn’t,” Kelly told Angelo Cataldi on Monday’s 94WIP Morning Show, when asked if he considered kicking a field-goal there. “I thought we were so close, I actually thought we had it [the first down]. Then the guys in the booth said where they spotted we weren’t gonna get it overturned. Felt like at the time and point in the game — 17-10 — I thought we were gonna convert.”

Listen: Chip Kelly on the 94WIP Morning Show

 

Instead, the Eagles — with Sam Bradford under-center and Ryan Mathews as the lone back — ran off-tackle to the right side, with Riley Cooper coming in motion as the lead blocker. The play never had a chance. The Cardinals took over on downs and went on to rout the Eagles 40-17.

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Eagles RB DeMarco Murray was 12 for 12 in short yardage situations. Nevertheless, the run went to Mathews.

“We had run the play all week long with Ryan,” Kelly said. “Ryan is a 230-pound back. We felt like one-yard — it wasn’t like we had [Darren] Sproles in there — that would have been a different scenario. But Ryan is actually our biggest back, so. Didn’t convert, didn’t execute the play.”

Murray, who signed a five-year deal worth $40 million in the offseason with the Eagles, had just two carries on the night. Over the last three games, Murray has just 61 rushing yards on 21 carries.

“We’re just rotating our backs like we have for the last couple of games,” Kelly said. “We didn’t run the ball as a team all that effective, I think we had 19 carries on the day. Ryan had 11, I think Darren had six, and then DeMarco — we had played three running backs. That was the rotation that we worked on during the week at practice. I think we got behind a little bit and threw the ball a little bit more than we wanted too. We’d like to run the ball a little bit more, like to be a little bit more balanced, but that’s just how the game expressed itself.

“Like I said, we’ve had a rotation going on the last couple of weeks with those guys. We’ve got Ryan back after missing part of the Miami game and then the Tampa Bay and Detroit game. That’s the way we practiced during the week. Again, we wish we could run the ball more and we had more carries for everybody.”

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The 6-8 Eagles — amazingly — still control their own destiny in the NFC East and face a must-win situation on Saturday night vs. the Washington Redskins.