Since being traded by the Philadelphia Eagles earlier this offseason, Buffalo Bills running back LeSean McCoy has not been shy in leveling criticism at his former head coach, Chip Kelly. But in an interview with ESPN's Mike Rodak, which published on Wednesday, McCoy took his criticism to an entirely new level.
McCoy had previously stated that Kelly "panicked" in attempting to replace him (the Eagles eventually signed DeMarco Murray and Ryan Mathews as free agents), and that Kelly has trouble dealing with stars. Now, he's on record intimating that Kelly is going out of his way to rid his Eagles roster of black stars.
"I think that's the way he runs his team. He wants the full control," McCoy told Rodak. "You see how fast he got rid of all the good players. Especially all the good black players. He got rid of them the fastest. That's the truth. There's a reason... It's hard to explain with him. But there's a reason he got rid of all the black players - the good ones - like that."
McCoy is not, actually, the first person to play the race card when discussing Kelly. Stephen A. Smith of ESPN made the same observation back in March, right after the McCoy-to-Buffalo trade was completed. And, for significantly more credibility, former Eagles assistant coach Tra Thomas - who coached under Kelly in 2013 and 2014 - said (basically) the same thing.
Per Rodak's report, the Eagles refused to respond to McCoy's comments.
McCoy also has a habit of following up each verbal salvo meant for Kelly with a comment about how he respected his former coach on the field, and that he's moved on now that he's in Buffalo. He did it again with Rodak.
"But that's one of the things where you don't even care no more," McCoy said. "I'm on a new team, ready to play. So it's nothing to do with Chip. I have no hatred toward him, nothing to say negative about him."
Except for that he panicked in replacing him, and that he can't deal with stars, and that he may or may not make roster decisions based on race.
It's May, when the NFL news cycle slows to a crawl and stories like this are played up to a degree significantly higher than they deserve, but perhaps it's time for McCoy to rely heavily on that "I have nothing negative to say about Chip" card first, and then talk exclusively about his new football team. He had a lot of nice things to say about the city of Buffalo, Rex Ryan, and the Pegulas in that chat with Rodak, as well.