PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — “No other guys in the league go from April through the end of the season. It takes a toll on you. At the end of the year, I feel like I’m going to fall apart.”
That was Philadelphia Eagles third-year offensive tackle Lane Johnson two days after head coach Chip Kelly was fired.
Johnson has been playing along side five-year veteran and Pro Bowl center Jason Kelce for his entire career. And maybe it was their enduring relationship that allowed Kelce to publicly criticize Johnson on Monday.
“Although it may seem that we’re working harder, I thought that Chip and the strength staff actually did an outstanding job of scaling back practices,” Kelce said Monday on the 94WIP Players’ Lounge Show when asked if the team got weary because of Kelly’s practice regiment. “We had a number of practice that were scaled back in time. We had a number of practices where we put no pads on in the middle of the season — they tried to give us like bye weeks almost. We were still out there at practice, but we weren’t banging. I couldn’t be further on the opposite spectrum of this.
Listen: Jason Kelce on the 94WIP Players’ Lounge Show
“I mean, I love Lane Johnson to death,” Kelce continued, “But he’s only played for one head coach. How does he know the way other teams practice? His only mindset is on what other guys say and what other guys say — they might come in and think that they’re working hard and maybe they’re just getting older. I mean who knows? I can tell you this. When we had Andy Reid, training camp was a lot harder than when we had Chip Kelly.
Kelce took it one step further, unable to hold back his passionate opinion.
“This is like one of the most pampered practice schedules I’ve been a part of to tell you truth,” Kelce said. “If I’m being honest, I think that we have massages, we have all these things put in place — we have smoothies. We have daily questionnaires. ‘How are you feeling today?’ Well dude, you’re gonna go out there and practice. So I think, quite honestly, some of these guys are a little pampered. I don’t want to get started on this, it really bugs me.”