Chip Kelly called the five Eagles who made the Pro Bowl on Tuesday night. He enjoyed those calls.
He also called the five players who were alternates. Those were not as fun. One was to defensive lineman Fletcher Cox, whose exclusion from the Pro Bowl roster surprised Kelly. Cox was named a sixth alternate.
"I thought he had a Pro Bowl year," Kelly said. "He's the one guy that when I was handed the results last night so I could call our players, that I was like, 'Wow.' That was the one that kind of surprised me. I think he's been our top player. He's been really unblockable at times. I think he's a very disruptive force. . . .. I know he may be our most valuable player overall, to be honest with you."
Working against Cox is his relative low profile in the league and being evaluated against defensive ends from 4-3 schemes, where statistics are usually more impressive those of a two-gap lineman. Cox has 65 tackles and four sacks this season.
"I was not happy about it," Cox said. "But at the end of the day, I don't control those types of things. I just move on."
Linebacker Mychal Kendricks, who was not even an alternate, was miffed at what he perceived as a snub. Kendricks has 99 tackles and four sacks even though he missed four games with a calf injury.
"I may not have attributes of other people, but other people don't have my attributes, either," Kendricks said. "I feel like that separates me and makes me a completely different 'backer. And with offenses going in this spread type of style, I guarantee you I might be the first of my kind. Watch more 'backers that are smaller, faster, quicker and start doing some of those things."
One call that Kelly especially enjoyed was to Darren Sproles, who is making his first Pro Bowl in his 10th NFL season.
"I think Darren was genuinely happy with himself being in the league  years and not ever making it, and finally getting the recognition that I think he deserves," Kelly said. "I think you watch how people kick away from us, and people do drastically change things. That was a huge deal for us in the offseason to really improve our punt-return game. I think he did a great job with that."
In a draft class loaded with top receivers, Kelly considered Giants wide receiver Odell Beckham Jr. the best. Beckham, who went No. 12 overall, has 79 catches for 1,120 yards and 11 touchdowns in 11 games. He was the third wide receiver selected in May's draft.
"He's explosive, he's got outstanding hands, he's got great range, outstanding body control, he's a dual threat because he's also a tremendous returner, and did it at the college level," Kelly said. "I think he could be an inside receiver, [and] he could be an outside receiver. He had everything. He's a guy that I just thought was a real electric player."