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Eagles' terrible loss to the Lions means Chip Kelly has five weeks to save his job

The home stretch is upon us.

Gregory Shamus/Getty Images

Didn't we just go through this last week? With another loss this embarrassing, this heartless and this hard to watch, picking winners and losers just seems like a waste of everyone's time. After all, no one wants to relive the painful thumping the Philadelphia Eagles just took at the hands of the Detroit Lions. So for this week, let's get creative with it, shall we?


The Eagles' draft position: As of now, the Eagles are slated to pick seventh in next spring's NFL Draft. With struggling teams like Cleveland, San Diego and Tennessee ahead of them, it remains unlikely that the Eagles would fall into the top five. But a top 10 pick could present the Eagles with an opportunity to pick up a blue-chip player for next year. Who knows, maybe that player will turn out to be a quarterback.

The under-the-radar guys: How many of you thought Trey Burton would make plays on Thursday? As disheartening a loss as it was, it's still nice to see guys like Burton, Jordan Matthews and Kenjon Barner show up. Heck, Seyi Ajirotutu had two good special teams tackles on the punt coverage unit. It's not much, but at least it's a sign that not all the lights have gone out.


Chip Kelly's future: His players insist they haven't quit on him. I'm not sure what else they would say, but anyone with eyes can see that something is going on inside Chip Kelly's locker room. There are plenty of grievances to be had about the way Kelly has handled his time as general manager, and he's had some suspect coaching decisions throughout the year.

If Kelly has indeed lost the trust of his players, bringing him back would be an impossibility. You simply can't waste another year hoping to "right the ship" if the majority of the locker room (or at least the players who hold sway) have tuned out the head coach. Kelly essentially has five more weeks to prove he deserves to keep his job. And with a road trip to New England looming, it's going to be a big task keeping that locker room intact.

The secondary: The Eagles defense went from being the best unit on this team to--well, maybe they still are. But over the last few weeks, there's been little to cheer for on the defensive side of the ball. They've given up 45 points in consecutive games for the first time in franchise history. They've allowed 15 passing touchdowns in November alone. It's been ugly.

It's hard to know where to place the blame. Early in the year Malcolm Jenkins and Walter Thurmond III looked like the best safety tandem in football. The secondary was taking the ball away with regularity, and showed improvement week to week. But when the offense continues to stall out, the defense finds itself on the field more often.

By the third quarter of Thursday's game, the Eagles' defense looked more like what Chip Kelly wants to do to the opposing defense - guys out of breath with their hands on their hips. Injuries haven't helped matters - especially with Nolan Carroll II now out with a broken ankle. Whatever the reason, the secondary has looked like a shell of its former self.

Eagles fans: There are five weeks to go Then, in all likelihood, we'll all watch another NFC East team limp into the playoffs. Rough.

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