PHOENIX -- Eagles owner Jeffrey Lurie spent a long time Tuesday trying not to say what appears to be the absolute truth in Philadelphia: Chip Kelly wanted then-general manager Howie Roseman out of the way in order to create the team in his vision.
"It wasn't Howie," Lurie said. "I think it was much more Chip's requirement to have sort of a football guy that he was comfortable with in terms of helping him day by day and minute by minute. We all recognize the value of, in organizations today, having someone that can manage the cap well, negotiate well, plan well and at the same time, evaluate well and be tied at the hip with the coach."
So basically, Kelly didn't think Roseman was a "football guy?"
"That may have been the interpretation," Lurie said. "But I don't think any of us really see it that way."
A lot of other people do, of course. But the reality is, Lurie is not making a bad football move here. A coach needs personnel to filter into his system. His system, which was wildly successful at the college level, is unique. He needs to re-tool the scouting department and re-teach all of the team's evaluators on how to interview and select prospects.
The problem is that Lurie isn't really guarding himself from what might happen if it all blows up, or if Kelly seeks more power, money or control in the future.
The owner admitted on Tuesday that he did not place any safeguards into Kelly's deal along with his new decision-making power, which ultimately allows the former college star to return to a place where any program would pay top dollar to have him.
"You think it through very much," Lurie said. "Chip is bright, he's smart, he's obsessed with football. This man is all about winning and it doesn't matter to him the public perception of a trade or where he's coming from. He's all about football and making us better."
Some other hits from Lurie:
» Lurie was asked about whether Sam Bradford is actually his guy, or if this has something to do with the rampant speculation surrounding Marcus Mariota. He smiled and said: "We've got to keep the ratings going, don't we?"
» On Bradford, and his initial view of him coming out of college: "We thought he was the best young quarterback we'd seen probably since Peyton Manning coming out of college. Rookie of the Year his first year, outstanding. Pat Shurmur had him as an offensive coordinator and reconfirmed everything we'd heard about him in the draft process. He's an extraordinary competitor, incredibly accurate and needs to stay healthy."