San Francisco 49ers head coach Chip Kelly says he has no plans to leave the organization. (Stan Olszewski/Special to S.F. Examiner)

Chip Kelly says he isn’t going back to college

The San Francisco 49ers are struggling, and their head coach once thrived in college.
Naturally, that’s led to several around the league — team officials and media alike — to wonder if Chip Kelly is eyeing an exit strategy from Santa Clara.

CBS Sports reported that one unnamed NFL executive said, “[Kelly] just keeps running the same shit and it isn’t fooling anybody. Do you think they could bring him back to Oregon?”

It was a common refrain by the fans in Philadelphia to call for Kelly to return to the collegiate game, which was somewhat unfair.

To pile onto him for the 49ers’ struggles (1-5) would be monumentally undeserved as he inherited a shoddy-at-best roster that has been further decimated by injuries.

When asked on Thursday if he was committed to his current organization, Kelly said, “I’m not going anywhere.”

It’s been a rotten season for this franchise and losing Kelly would compound its problems, because of all the areas it’s deficient, coaching ranks low on the list.

That’s not to say he’s been perfect. Hiring defensive coordinator Jim O’Neil looks to have been a massive mistake as running holes for opponents and instances of blown coverages seem to grow by the week.

(Doesn’t it feel like that Week 1 blowout over the Los Angeles Rams happened ages ago?)
I’m not ready to bury Kelly for hiring O’Neil. The former Cleveland Browns defensive coordinator wasn’t Kelly’s first choice. That would be Mike Vrabel, who refused what would’ve amounted to a promotion, preferring his role as linebackers coach for the Houston Texans.

That was an embarrassing episode for the 49ers. But if O’Neil’s struggling defense lands the Niners a top-two pick after this lost year, that’s all the better for Kelly to work with when general manager Trent Baalke is inevitably fired at the end of the year.

Kelly isn’t capable of doing the impossible — that is, turning this roster into a winner — but given some time and new players, he could return the Niners back into contention.

The Faithful just have to hope he’s willing to weather the storm in the meantime.

Just Posted

Faced with safety fears in Chinese community, Breed pins blame on Board of Supervisors

San Francisco’s Chinese community is deeply worried about crime, and Mayor London… Continue reading

Jurors replaced and deliberations set to begin again in Ghost Ship trial

Three jurors have been dismissed Monday in the trial of Ghost Ship… Continue reading

Suspect in Embarcadero attack surrenders to authorities on new allegations

Austin James Vincent has landed at the center of a battle over plans to build a homeless shelter

Rocks off! Rolling Stones sound great in Santa Clara

No Filter tour serves up classic hits

Gov. Gavin Newsom signs bill setting new standards for police use of force

Here’s how ‘Stephon Clark’s law’ sets California rules

Most Read