Wednesday, March 26, 2014
Kelly takes Mathis reports in stride
By Mike Reiss
ORLANDO, Fla. -- Multiple media reports have indicated that the Philadelphia Eagles have given Pro Bowl guard Evan Mathis permission to seek a trade, although the situation hardly seemed to faze coach Chip Kelly during the NFC coaches breakfast Wednesday.
Mathis, who enters the third season of a five-year, $25 million contract he signed in 2012, reportedly is seeking a new deal. The Eagles responded by giving the 32-year-old Mathis the opportunity to shop himself in a trade, according to the Philadelphia Inquirer, among others.
The story broke Wednesday morning before Kelly's media breakfast, but in a sign of how DeSean Jackson's future with the team is still swirling, it didn't come up for the first 30 minutes. For a moment, it seemed to catch Kelly off guard.
"What's the report with Evan Mathis?" Kelly asked, when a reporter questioned him about the breaking news on Mathis.
When told that the report was that the Eagles are open to trading him, and then when asked if he was worried about Mathis or any player in that situation buying into the program, Kelly didn't break stride.
"Generally maybe, but do I worry about Evan? No," he said. "Evan, when you talk about a go-to-work-lunchpail mentality, that's Evan Mathis. I don't worry about Evan in that sense. ...
"At the end of the day, when you come to work, if anything is a distraction to you, then you're not being the best player you can be. What you can control is how you show up every day, what your attitude is when you're in the meeting rooms, what your attitude is when you're on the practice field, what your attitude is when you're in the weight room.
"When you talk about Evan specifically, I don't worry about that. Evan has been, since Day 1 since I got here, has been just outstanding, whether it's in the meeting room, in the weight room, on the practice field -- he practiced every day. You can look it up, he may have played the most snaps in the NFL last year."
Kelly continued: "Again, I don't think there's one guy in the league that would say, ‘I'm good [financially].' But they don't bring that to work."
After those remarks, Kelly said that he personally hasn't spoken with Mathis about the issue.