Howie Roseman’s rise, fall and return to power

The Chip Kelly era didn't just define Chip Kelly and Jeffrey Lurie. It also helped define where Howie Roseman stands with the Philadelphia Eagles.

Roseman was elevated to general manager under Andy Reid in 2010, though he served more as an advisor with Reid having the final say in football decisions.

When Reid was fired following the 2012 season and Chip Kelly came aboard, Roseman's rise to power came complete. But that stay in a power position was short-lived.

Kelly's hunger for the same power Reid had when Roseman started as GM took over and at the start of the 2015 season, Kelly was granted that power as the GM of the Eagles.

With Kelly's firing, no GM will be named. But that move, puts Roseman back in a seat of power, making collaborative decisions with Tom Donahoe – at least temporarily — and Lurie regarding player personnel moves.

Roseman's rise, fall and return to power had come complete.

By the time Roseman took over as GM, he had already spent 10 years with the Eagles organization, starting as an intern in salary cap management and worked his way up to vice president of player personnel in the two years prior to taking the GM role.

When Chip Kelly was hired, Roseman became the primary decision-maker on football decision, with Kelly focusing on the coaching and Roseman constructing the team.

But there was turmoil from the beginning. Kelly wanted the power to build his own team. Everyone knew it. But Lurie was going to have to hand over the keys before that happened.

As the Eagles neared that decision, tension grew between Kelly and Roseman. As Lurie said at his press conference on Wednesday, Kelly's push to gain the power was granted to hold him accountable and maximize his visions on making the Eagles a Super Bowl contender.

Roseman was removed from the GM role, with Kelly taking charge, and promoted to Executive Vice President of Football Operations. But the power struggle between Roseman and Kelly, already underway, only grew from there.

Ed Marynowitz was brought in for the fired Tom Gamble. Marynowitz and Roseman clashed and by the end of Kelly's tenure, Marynowitz, one of Kelly's guys, was gone and Roseman was put back in some position of power.

Roseman, now part of the brain trust with Lurie and newly-promoted senior director of player personnel Donahoe, made his return to the top.

And what does that say about the Eagles? Not only does it further affirm the lack of success that the Chip Kelly gamble was, it's almost as if the Eagles did not learn anything from the past.

Lurie, Roseman and team president Don Smolenski were the hiring committee that brought Chip Kelly to Philadelphia. Lurie said that decision was unanimous. Three years later, Kelly is out, the Eagles roster is a hot mess and Roseman is back in charge, now having to pick up the pieces — which the Eagles already had to do after Reid's firing — with the same group who created the mess by hiring Kelly.

It wasn't until Roseman's first rise to the top that Reid's firing became long overdue. There were many questionable moves and draft picks that left the team in disarray, and looking like they needed a rebuilding period. 

Lurie insists there won't be a rebuilding period, but it is foolish to expect that the Eagles will find a coach who can stun the NFL the way Kelly did in Year 1, with a new style and system that takes time to adjust.

By Year 3 under Kelly, the Eagles had made wholesale changes to the roster and the rest of the league caught up to Kelly's play style. Kelly failed to make the in-game adjustments and struggled at evaluating talent. It proved to be his downfall.

But that small sample from Reid's final days says Roseman isn't much better. Add in a new director of player personnel, currently Donahoe — who last had a playoff win in 1997 — and the Eagles mess is far from over with just Kelly.

But the trust that Lurie placed in Roseman, and the quickness with which Roseman earned, lost and regained power says a lot about where he stands with the Eagles.

The Eagles will have to act fast if they want to secure the best coach they can find in the offseason to take over on the sidelines. But if the last five years — four without playoff appearances — and seven seasons from their last playoff win are any indication, Roseman has been part of the problem as well.

It didn't stop the Eagles from putting him back in charge again.

Kevin Durso is managing editor for Eagledelphia. Follow him on Twitter @Kevin_Durso.

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