There was a nonsensical article published by the Wall Street Journal last Tuesday with quotes from former NFL vice president of officiating Mike Pereira and NFL vice president of officiating Dean Blandino which said that NFL officials were not going to cater to Chip Kelly's up-tempo offense.
The article had a certain tone of "Hang on now college boy, we control the tempo of the game, not you."
As Kelly mans his first full week of NFL training camp, installing a high-revving Ferrari engine into the Eagles' offense, league insiders say there are exactly zero indications NFL referees will be willing participants in the Kelly era. The NFL, they say, has a long-standing pace at which they do things between plays and the referees "aren't going to change just to accommodate someone's offense," said Mike Pereira, a former NFL vice president of officiating who is now an analyst for Fox Sports.
"We have to make sure teams understand that they don't control the tempo, our officials do," said NFL vice president of officiating Dean Blandino. "We're going through our normal ball mechanics; we aren't going to rush [unless] it's in the two minute drill."
Philly.com (I) did a short film breakdown showing the Patriots' no-huddle, which was operating at a pace of about 10 seconds from the whistle until the offense was lined up on the next play, which was something that even replacement officials were able to handle. It also noted that the Eagles were not yet operating as quickly as the Pats, as they were averaging about 12 seconds from whistle to legal alignment during training camp.
Yesterday, NFL official Scott Green spoke with Philly media about the tempo issue, and didn't think the Eagles' pace was something they couldn't handle.
"From what I've seen over the last two days (at Eagles training camp)," Green said, "we really didn't have any problem... They were running 11-on-11, and we were getting the ball spotted, and it didn't seem out of the ordinary as far as the pace.
"The key is whether there is a substitute that comes into the game. The offense may want to move, and move quickly, whether it's the Eagles, Patriots, whomever, but the defense has the opportunity to match up if in fact there's a substitute. If there's not a substitute, then it's just the normal course of time that it takes us to spot the ball, and like I said, over the last two days, we didn't see anything that we found that was going to be very difficult for us to spot the ball."
Green also noted that the officials had no issues spotting the ball for the Patriots last season.
"Nothing that came to us and said there's a problem," said Green, "and I've worked the Patriots and I've never had a real problem as far as getting the ball spotted."
Follow Jimmy on Twitter.