Reporting Daryl Ruiter
CLEVELAND (92.3 The Fan) – The Philadelphia Eagles have engaged the Cleveland Browns in an apparent bidding war for Oregon coach Chip Kelly.
Kelly was expected to meet Browns owner Jimmy Haslam and CEO Joe Banner for dinner Saturday evening following his interview with the Eagles but that has not happened as of Sunday at 12:20 a.m. eastern time.
It was expected that Kelly would make a decision quickly but it appears that it will drag on for a 3rd day on Sunday.
The Eagles’ sent owner Jeffrey Lurie, general manager Howie Roseman, and team president Don Smolenski to meet Kelly in Phoenix according to the Philadelphia Inquirer.
Brian Startare, of our sister station WIP in Philadelphia, reported Saturday evening that Kelly and the Eagles are close on a 5-year contract per a league source.
The same was reported of Kelly and the Browns Friday evening by multiple outlets including the Associated Press.
Haslam and Banner met with Kelly for over 7 hours Friday but granted his wish to speak with the Bills and Eagles – something he didn’t do last year, which was speak with multiple teams, after changing his mind and declining an opportunity to coach the Tampa Bay Buccaneers to return to Oregon.
Kelly met with the Bills Friday evening but it didn’t last nearly as long as the ones he held with the Browns and Eagles.
Philadelphia is expected to go ahead with their previously scheduled coaching interviews with Broncos offensive coordinator Mike McCoy and Syracuse coach Doug Marrone on Sunday.
While Kelly spent the day with the Eagles, Ian Rapoport of the NFL Network reports the Browns met for a second time with Marrone Saturday.
The Browns will not comment on their interview process.
They first interviewed Marrone on Thursday and he could quickly turn into ‘plan b’ if Kelly goes to Philadelphia.
In 4 years at Syracuse Marrone has gone 25-25 including 8-5 this season to tie for the Big East Conference title and the Orange beat West Virginia, 38-14, in the Pinstripe Bowl.