After running 30 plays in his first 15 minutes of Chip Kelly football, even Michael Vick was ready for a break.
“I’ve never been a part of anything like it,” the Philadelphia Eagles quarterback said. “When the first quarter was over, I thought we was about to go into halftime. It was unreal. The only thing I could tell myself was, ‘It’s going to be a long season.’”
Long season, huh? Well, not in the traditional sense. Win or lose, the Eagles were surely going to be exhaustingly entertaining in the first year under Kelly, but the tired feeling is a good one when the don’t-take-a-breath offense works the way it did in Monday night’s 33-27 win over the Washington Redskins.
“Sometimes, we all take ourselves too seriously,” said Kelly, making his pro coaching debut after winning 87 percent of his games at the University of Oregon. “We love playing football. There’s a passion with it. That’s the way it should be played. I had a lot of fun tonight. I think our guys had a lot of fun.”
Fun? Don’t talk to the Redskins about fun. This was supposed to be the celebratory welcome back party for Robert Griffin III eight months after his major knee surgery. Instead, RG3 threw a career-high two interceptions and spent a lot of time on the sideline watching his defense wear down.
As the teams exchanged pleasantries at the final whistle, Redskins defensive lineman Chris Baker said to Eagles center Jason Kelce said: “Next time we play you guys, you need to slow it down a bit.”
Vick completed 15 of 25 passes for 203 yards and two touchdowns, and he also ran nine times for 56 yards and a score. LeSean McCoy piled up 184 yards on 31 carries, including a 34-yard TD. DeSean Jackson had seven catches for 104 yards and a TD. The Eagles’ 263 yards rushing was their most since 2002.
TEXANS 31, CHARGERS 28: Randy Bullock kicked a 41-yard field goal as time expired, and Houston rallied from a 21-point deficit in the second half for a victory over San Diego.
Brian Cushing returned an interception 18 yards for the tying touchdown with 9:30 to play for the Texans, who roared back from a 28-7 deficit late in the third quarter to spoil the debut of San Diego coach Mike McCoy.
Matt Schaub threw a tipped interception on Houston’s first play of the season, but recovered to pass for 346 yards and three TDs — two to tight end Owen Daniels.
Schaub calmly engineered the final 36-yard drive to set up Bullock, who coolly nailed his first NFL field goal.
Philip Rivers threw four touchdown passes as the Chargers gave their fans a tantalizing start under McCoy — and an agonizing reminder of last season, when they blew five halftime leads.