Nine months after Eagles GM Chip Kelly gave DeMarco Murray a five-year $42 million contract, Eagles coach Chip Kelly appears to have benched the running back.

Murray played only 14 snaps during the Eagles’ upset win over the Patriots on Sunday, as backups Darren Sproles (15 carriers, four receptions) and Kenjon Barner (nine carries, two receptions) both touched the ball more than Murray (eight carries). Murray’s share could be even smaller when Ryan Matthews returns from a concussion.

Murray’s first season in Philadelphia has not gone as planned. The 27-year-old former Cowboy has 569 rushing yards and four touchdowns on the season and is averaging only 3.5 yards per carry. In Dallas last year, Murray racked up 1,845 yards and 13 touchdowns on 4.7 yards per carry.

Murray always seemed like an odd fit in Kelly’s system. He’s a big, bruising back who made a living muscling through holes created by the Cowboy’s monstrous offensive line, not the kind of speedster Kelly tends to favor. Last offseason, when Kelly traded LeSean McCoy and signed Murray, the coach’s defenders implored us to wait and see. Well, now we’ve seen, and the running back shuffling remains as confusing as ever.

According to Pro Football Talk, Murray said the right things after Sunday’s apparent demotion.

“You always want an opportunity to play and obviously run the ball, but we got the big victory so that’s all that matters,” Murray said. “Things we were doing were working so it went well for us.”

Now that Kelly the coach has decided he’s better off without Murray, Kelly the GM might consider whether to cut ties with the running back this offseason, if either Kelly is still around, that is.

 

About Alex Putterman

Alex is a writer and editor for The Comeback and Awful Announcing. He has written for The Atlantic, VICE Sports, MLB.com, SI.com and more. He is a proud alum of Northwestern University and The Daily Northwestern. You can find him on Twitter @AlexPutterman.