Eagles feeling stronger than ever due to focus on fitness

Chip Kelly
Chip Kelly is winning games this season with a focus on players’ overall health.
Credit: Getty Images

This issue of sports science just won’t go away.

It’s here to stay, as a talking point, from now until head coach Chip Kelly’s team runs out of gas. The latter doesn’t seem likely — not after the Eagles reeled off five straight wins, not after nonchalantly throwing up 34 second-half points in a blizzard and not after turning a bashful Nick Foles into a household name.

“I have a lot of flaws in my game that I understand,” said Foles, who graces the cover of this week’s Sports Illustrated magazine. “I’ve got to make those better every day. If I can get one-hundredth of a percent better each day, that’ll eventually add up.”

Foles is a humble kid from Texas who has bought into Kelly’s system — and what a system. The former Oregon coach took over a mess of a team coming off a 4-12 nightmare. One of the first changes Kelly made was adding an extra day of practice.

The coach informed his players they must come in on Tuesdays, a day traditionally reserved as a day of rest across the NFL. At first, the move was met with moaning and groaning in the Eagles locker room.

“I never really liked it, but you gotta buy in,” said receiver DeSean Jackson. “That’s one of the things you gotta do. … Professional athlete, you gotta adjust on the run. Here we are in December and I think it’s definitely helping us out. I don’t know, man, we’re just fresh.”

Kelly has seemingly changed the entire culture, not with his play-calling — although that has been crucial in the turnaround as well — but with his focus on health, things like achieving optimal heart rate and getting enough rest. The Eagles look just as fresh, maybe fresher, than they did after a wild Week 1 in Washington.

”I think our players have taken care of themselves and really understand what we’re trying to get accomplished, and I think it showed,” Kelly said. “But I don’t think it’s because it’s December. I think it showed earlier in the year, too. I watch our players each week, and I believe we’re fresh when we go play games on Sundays.”

The Eagles are finally seeing the results. They outscored the Lions 28-6 in the fourth quarter in the Snow Globe Game after being blanked 39-0 in that crucial frame over the past four weeks.

“It’s the system, the sports science,” said Jackson. “I can’t give out a lot of secrets because there’s a lot of other teams out there listening, but we’re staying late, practicing hard, getting our legs back early in the week. … So, at the same time, we work, but at the same time we take care of our bodies, but there’s a lot of things we’re doing.”

Kelly, as usual, wouldn’t take credit.

“When we meet, we talk about our opponent,” he said. “I don’t stand up there and talk about what your heart rate is. We’re coaching football.”


News
Entertainment
Sports
Lifestyle
Local

Best nature spots for kids in New York…

When it comes to kids and nature, most U.S. parents agree: children should be spending more time outdoors. According to a recent survey by The…

Local

Man dead, another injured after stabbing during fight…

One man was killed and another was stabbed in the back after a fight broke out inside a Brooklyn McDonald's on Sunday night, police said.

Local

Man survives shooting in Bronx apartment building lobby

A man survived a shot to his abdomen on Sunday after authorities say an unknown suspect fired off inside the Bronx apartment building lobby.

News

Easter Egg hunt horror as skydiver plummets to…

A FAMILY Easter egg hunt ended in horror when a skydiver plummeted to his death in a New York garden after his parachute failed to…

The Word

Peaches Geldof's coffin featured a painting of her…

Sob. The coffin of 25-year-old Peaches Geldof featured a painting of her young family.

The Word

Terry Richardson tried to trade Vogue spread for…

Last night, model Emma Appleton tweeted a screenshot of a text that appeared to be a proposition from Terry Richardson.

Television

‘Mad Men’ recap: Season 7, Episode 2, ‘A…

Peggy and Lou are horrible, Bert's racist, Don is honest(ish) and Roger and Pete are frustrated. "A Day's Work" not quite worthy of "This Will Be Our Year."

Television

'Game of Thrones' recap: Season 4, Episode 3,…

The problem with the devil you know is that ignoring them doesn’t mean they simply lie in wait. It allows them time to do things…

NHL

Rangers let chance at victory slip away in…

All the Rangers had to do was hold serve in a raucous Madison Square Garden — roaring in anticipation of putting a hated rival in a 2-0 series hole.

MLB

Yankees place Ivan Nova on DL with partially…

Yankees starter Ivan Nova was diagnosed with a partially torn UCL in his throwing elbow Sunday.

NHL

Rangers never thought opening round would be 'an…

You might have thought the Metropolitan Division semifinal series was going to be a rout after watching Game 1 Thursday night. The Rangers did not.

NHL

Rangers blow two-goal lead in Game 2 loss…

The Rangers got out to an early 2-0 lead in Game 2 and the Garden was rocking. But it went downhill quickly from there.

Travel

Packing: The one thing you need in your…

A new survey that looks at the travel habits of 50,000 people around the world has revealed that Western and Asian globetrotters have different priorities…

Home

Is your chair making it hard to talk?

Ever wished there was an office chair that could make impromptu meetings and discussions more private? The Cristiana Wing Chair is an asymmetrical armchair which…

Travel

Live large at these luxury hotels

From Thai boxing lessons and macabre Dracula tours to the Australian Outback, the Four Seasons hotel chain launched a series of new travel packages this…

Parenting

4 things that every summer camp should have

Alan Saltz, director of the 92nd street Y program lists things that every summer camp should have.