"One hundred percent; it's all on my shoulders," Kelly said. "It's the same thing I said a year ago. It's unacceptable."
Despite having a home game against a beatable, though recently exceptional Redskins team, Kelly's team floundered. Players again questioned coaching decisions in the locker room. A former No. 1 overall pick at quarterback will hit the offseason not knowing if he'll return in 2016.
This was Kelly's doing, and even though he will not admit the extent of his control over personnel, the 2015 team was one built completely upon his vision. DeMarco Murray, who Kelly used in part to replace LeSean McCoy, fumbled a pitch that was returned for a touchdown in the third quarter. It ended up being the knockout blow in a game where Murray was roundly booed throughout. DeSean Jackson, another Kelly cut, held up an "L" sign for his former losing club as he exited the field. Jackson has helped transform Washington's offense, and finished with four catches for 40 yards on Saturday.
"We didn't play well enough to beat a good football team," Kelly said. "You can't put yourself in the hole like we did. Those two turnovers were costly for us, and then, obviously, I think drops affected us on the offensive side of the ball."
While many think this is grounds for firing Kelly even after two 10-win seasons, it could be a powerful coaching moment for the former college coaching star. Kelly is learning a painful lesson about talent acquisition on the grandest stage, and watched as some of his most important players contributed to his downfall. Murray stands out as one example, but first-round pick Nelson Agholor dropped a touchdown pass. Linebacker Kiko Alonso, the return in the McCoy trade, was beaten for a touchdown. Marcus Smith, their first-rounder in 2014, did not record a defensive snap in Saturday's game and has played fewer than 100 downs this season.
And yet, there are still good pieces on this team. Kelly did not burn it to the ground, but he needs to spend the next few months learning how to patch up some pretty serious holes.