Updating the QB Race

Posted: June 10th, 2013 | Author: | Filed under: Philadelphia Eagles | 127 Comments »

Who will be the Eagles QB in 2013? We’ve got Vick vs Foles, with a dash of Barkley thrown in. Dixon and Kinne are there, but realistically they are on the outside looking in.  So who is winning?

Nick Foles.

That’s great news for Foles fans, but it doesn’t mean much. It is the equivalent of leading the Indy 500 after 12 laps. While you’d rather be first than second, the race is just getting started.  Training Camp and the preseason games are the real meat of the QB battle. Hitting is live and the tempo of the action goes up a notch. That’s when you find out who can play and who can’t. Football in shorts…well it isn’t football.

I have not been to Eagles practice to see the action with my own eyes. I am making this judgment after reading practice notes and Twitter comments from Jimmy Kempski, Sheil Kapadia, Les Bowen, Jeff McLane, Geoff Mosher, Reuben Frank, Zach Berman,  Tim McManus, Bob Grotz, Jordan Raanan, Dan Graziano and Don Banks. I could be leaving someone out, but you get the picture. This isn’t about one biased reporter.

While I wish I was at practice and able to judge with my own eyes, I think you can read through reports and collect enough facts to help you get a picture of what is happening. The funny thing is that some reporters aren’t even listening to themselves.  Check out what Graziano had to say:

Could (Vick) still lose the starting quarterback job to Foles? Of course. But after spending three days around the team these past couple of weeks, I maintain my belief that this summer would have to be a colossal failure by Vick in order for anyone else to get the job. There’s just no one else in that red-shirted quintet who offers what Vick offers in terms of experience and 2013 upside. Foles remains, for me at least, remarkably uninspiring. Matt Barkley looks like a rookie who’s well behind the rest of the pack. Dennis Dixon and G.J. Kinne look like backups, which is what they are.

Was it a frustrating day on the field for Vick? Sure. He threw a pass right into one of those black “flyswatter” things those guys wear on their backs to simulate the pass rush in 7-on-7 drills. His efforts in team drills stalled while Foles completed a 60-yard touchdown bomb toDeSean Jackson. I could see why Vick was frustrated Thursday, sure. But there’s a long way to go in this yet, and I think he’s going to have to really show he can’t handle the type of offense Kelly wants to run if Kelly’s going to give control of that offense to someone else in Week 1.

He’s telling you that Foles outplayed Vick, but he still thinks Vick will be the starter because he finds Foles “uninspiring”. That comment ties in to a big problem as we discuss this issue…potential vs performance.

Vick supporters seem baffled how there is even a competition. They point to Vick’s arm. They point to his mobility. They talk about his experience and the big plays he’s made. No one questions that Vick has the edge in these areas. Vick also has some bad habits that come with this. He holds the ball too long. He has had major turnovers issues for 2 years. He isn’t consistently accurate. Vick has enormous potential, but you cannot ignore the problems. They are part of the package, and a major reason why he’s in this situation. Vick’s talent is what got the Eagles to decide  to keep him. They were curious to see how he would play in Kelly’s system. That still doesn’t guarantee him the job. Not even close.

Chip Kelly is not looking for the most talented QB. That would be Vick, by far. Race over.

Kelly is trying to find the player who can run his offense the best. We know Kelly preaches accuracy and decision-making. From what I’ve read, Foles is leading in these areas. In regard to the fly swatter devices, Vick is the only QB I’ve read who has hit them. And he has even hit them multiple times in a single practice. We know Vick had an issue with batted balls in the last 2 years. Kelly is trying to get QBs to find passing lanes for those short throws over the middle. Vick is having some issues there.

Jimmy Kempski has made the most important point of all. While Vick has thrown some beautiful downfield throws, more than a few have come after he’s been “sacked”. This is when a defender gets in the backfield and puts the 2-hand touch on the QB. Coaches don’t blow the play dead. They let the offense finish it out to get use from the rep. Vick is still holding onto the ball longer than he should. His instincts to wait for the big play are still there. Kelly wants the ball gone quickly. He hates sacks and turnovers. Holding onto the ball is a good way for those things to become issues.

Foles is getting more reps than Vick right now. Foles is having more successful drives. He’s completing more passes. Vick is getting frustrated, as his comments last week would tell you.  He’s just not used to being in this situation.

Is it possible that Foles is getting more reps for a non-performance reason? Sure. Kelly had more game tape of Vick to watch. He could simply want to see more of Foles. Or this could be a way to get Vick’s attention. Like all of us, Kelly knows Vick is more talented. Like all of us, Kelly knows Vick underachieved the last 2 years. One way to get him out of his comfort zone is to see Foles play more.

Of course, it could be that Foles is simply playing better and getting the extra reps because of that.

I went back and re-read some notes and info from last spring to help give context to this year’s QB situation. At this time last year, Vick was the starter. No one was close to him. Mike Kafka was throwing the ball better than ever and looked like a solid #2. Foles was a lost rookie. The team was high on his potential, but he threw a lot of ducks and looked like a project. Trent Edwards was 4th. As Geoff Mosher said in a funny tweet, Edwards was 4th “by a longshot”. Jimmy talked about how he was struggling to throw spirals consistently. The coaches had changed his motion and it showed.

Training Camp started. Vick remained the top QB. Kafka wasn’t as impressive. Foles and Edwards looked better, but were still clearly a notch below.

Then came the preseason games. Vick got hurt. Kafka got hurt. Foles got a lot of work and played well. Edwards came alive.

Vick was the starter. Kafka got cut. Foles had played well enough from August 10th (or so) that he secured the backup spot. Edwards secured the #3 job.

Barkley is clearly in third place right now. How does he compare to Foles from last year? Can he make the same leap that Nick did? I don’t know that it is likely, but it is possible. Can Dixon make a strong run like Edwards did? That is possible, especially if Dixon gets some serious preseason game reps.

Vick and Foles can change between now and August.

This really is a crucial moment in Vick’s career. Kelly has told him what needs to be done to win the QB job. Get the ball out quickly and accurately. Don’t take sacks. Don’t turn the ball over. Vick must sit down and really think about how he played in the OTAs and camps. He has to be honest with himself. Vick can play in Kelly’s system, but only if he makes changes. He must embrace the Kelly way and forget the Vick way.

Vick got a taste of what Kelly wants. He’s run the plays. He’s heard the instructions. There is no more guessing. Vick knows what the deal is. He must let go of the past and embrace the present if he is going to win the QB job and keep it. Kelly won’t let him play his way out of an extended slump.

What is so ironic about all of this is that Vick has more tools to work with than he’s ever had in his career. He has RBs and TEs and WRs and potentially a very good O-line. All Vick has to do is get the ball to the right player, on time and accurately. The pressure is then on the skill guys to be the playmakers.  Vick doesn’t need to be the center of the offense. The pressure is off him. But that is a role that Vick struggles with. He is comfortable with being the guy who has to do it all since that is what most of his career has been.

It is easy to dismiss Vick since we’re talking about a major change that must be made in a short time, but I think he can do it. Kelly is trying to make things easier on Vick, not harder. This is all about attitude. Does Vick buy in and do things Kelly’s way? Last May, Trent Edwards was struggling to throw a spiral just in casual drills. By mid-August he was leading the offense up and down the field in preseason games. He finished the preseason with a rating of 100.5 and completed 67.5 percent of his passes. Vick doesn’t have to make physical changes like Edwards. Vick just needs to run the offense the way Kelly wants it. That can be done.

In the 6 weeks until the guys report for camp, Foles needs to find a RB and run the read-option over and over and over. That’s something he can work on for sure. Vick needs to throw short, quick passes as much as he can.

Working by yourself or with a couple of buddies isn’t the same as practicing with teammates in a supervised environment, but you can still gain something from it. Every rep can help if you push yourself and truly try to improve. Both Vick and Foles have strong work ethics. Both guys want to win the starting job. The player who takes better advantage of the next 6 weeks might just be the guy who will get the job.

Barkley has the most room to grow, but will he be able to pass Foles and Vick? I don’t think that is likely.

It really is funny to think back 12 months ago. We had such high hopes for Vick. We thought Kafka was going to be a good backup. Foles was a complete afterthought. Life seemed so good back then. Now we have a legitimate QB battle for the first time since 1997. The lack of stability is a bit unnerving, but the results have to be better than what we saw last year.

The QB job is there for the taking. Who wants it the most?

* * * * *

Paul Domowitch wrote a good piece last week that ties in to the QB battle. It would help the Eagles financially for Foles or Barkley to win the QB job. They have cheap salaries for this year and the next couple of seasons.

Vick has been paid $3.5M and will get another $3.5M if he makes the roster. If he gets the job and plays well, the Eagles will have to pony up big money for 2014 and the future.

I think Kelly is going to give the QB spot to the player that wins it. He is a new coach and wants to win.

* * * * *

Some of you have asked what will happen to Vick if he doesn’t get the starting job. I’ll cover that in a future post.

_


  • OregonDucker

    I get the sense that when a play starts to fail, Vick tends to improvise. This is NOT what Chip wants. The Chippah is looking for the QB to recognize the situation and check-down his prescribed options. With Chip, EVERYTHING is scripted. Defaulting to your athletic ability is not in Chip’s game plan. Bumbling, fumbling, and throwing interceptions really, really pisses him off.

    At Oregon, Chip had a good quarterback in Brian Bennett who thought he was the heir apparent QB. One problem though, Brian always defaulted to a QB run when things went bad, OR he threw up a goose-egg that was intercepted. Brian did not get the starting QB job.

    If Vick improves his decision-making and improves accuracy then he’s got the job. If he continues to improvise in ways counterproductive to the play check-downs, then he will be cut. Just my two cents.

    • TommyLawlor

      Good stuff.

      Really appreciate you sharing the Oregon perspective. Will be very helpful in learning the ways of Chip.

    • Lukekelly65

      I really like hearing the Oregon perspective.. I watched almost all the Fishduck videos there great…the thing i really notice every time i watch one is that the QB has all the pressure on him to make quick choices..in my opinion i think Foles is better at this then vick like OregonDucker said everything is scripted and vick tends to improvise when things break down i know thats just a small point but im hoping Foles takes tommys advice and runs a whole bunch of read options before TC and comes in ready to go and runs away with the job

      • Michael Winter Cho

        He may take the job, but “walk” away with the job is probably more likely…

    • Mac

      I’m getting the feeling that Chip wants a guy who can be an excellent “point guard” type at QB. He wants a guy who will identify the weakness, and get the ball there quickly and accurately. Maintain possession and put the play-makers in position to score.

      I get the feeling Chip is looking for a “Rajon Rondo” ball distributor first and foremost. He obviously wouldn’t object to getting a “Tony Parker” who can distribute the ball with the best of them, but also put the team on his shoulders and make an amazing play. But I do not think he wants a “Russel Westbrook” who is going to recklessly drive himself and sometimes the whole team to the brink.

      My take is that Foles is a “Rondo” type. He’s not going to scare anyone by himself, but with the right weapons he can make it work.

      Vick has the potential to be a “Parker” type, but so far he looks more like the “Westbrook” model.

      • GEagle

        Today, I would agree with your views on the QBs…

        But Long term, I’m not ready to put any limits on how good Foles can be.

    • GEagle

      The OregonDucker always brings it! Good stuff!
      ..
      I don’t see anyway Vick ever plays more then two games for Chip Kelly. After all the dumb stuff Vick does, when the pace is slow, he has a huddle, and a coach who won’t hold him accountable…I don’t see how in the world he can be sharper mentally playing at a much faster pace, having to communicate a drastically different way then what he is used to, all while being in the first year of a drastically different offense. This time last year the story was how this would be his second year in the offense, and things would be so different. Lol He regressed in his second year in a new offense…
      ..
      If This was Vicks 3rd year in this offense, and his competition was Foles who was learning this offense for the first time, I could see how Vick could maybe win..but both learning the offense from the ground up, I don’t expect Vick to be able to win this battle, especially against a smart, hungry, young kid who will improve every day. Vick has NO experience throwing Option routes, Foles has had some success with it in the past. Vick hasn’t seen any spread principles in god knows how long, Foles was in a spread, that often ran out of No huddle just a couple years ago…If Vick performs the best, then I want Vick to start. I want every eagle to earn his spot, but my expectation. Like it has been since The day Chip was hired(when everyone was telling me what a lock Foles was to be traded), Foles is going to wipe the floor with Vick at Camp!
      ..
      people want Vick cut. but he is serving a very important purpose. he is forcing Foles to step his game up, not be complacent, and fight to win his spot, and that’s a ve valuable dynamic that Vick is providing(he just doesn’t know it yet) lol

      • aub32

        It’s amazing how little credit you give a 12 year vet in this league. Has Vick always been the most focused and disciplined player? No. But to just assume it would take him 3 years in an offense just to have a chance at beating Foles in a new offense is ludicris. Contrary to your statements, Vick does better in a no huddle scheme. In fact, many questioned last year why Reid didn’t run more no huddle with Vick. I don’t know who will win the battle, but I wish I could be as confident in either one of these guys as you are in Foles. You haven’t seen Foles have a good game since he played against Tampa, yet you are confident he will wipe the floor with a guy who has more physical ability and experience than Foles can ever dream of having. I don’t get it. I really don’t get why some fans are so against Vick. We aren’t talking about a worn out run down vet here. There’s nothing Foles or Barkly can do on a physical level that Vick can’t. And if Chip’s plan really is to make it as easy as he can on the QBs, then it’s just a matter of learning the system, and if all three guys have the same grasp of the system, there’s no logical explanation anyone can give to why Vick wouldn’t be under center.

        • joe

          It’s simple. Vick is dumb, Foles isn’t. All the (declining) athleticism in the world won’t save him if he doesn’t operate the offense the way Chip wants.

          • aub32

            With insight like this it’s a wonder how Philly fans ever got a bad rap.

          • Iskar36

            I guess it’s a good sign that the comment being on this site, I assumed he was being sarcastic.

        • GEagle

          Credit? How much credit should a twelve year vet get that has never had two seasons in a row with a QBR over 80(btw, 80 isn’t exactly setting the bar high)??? I need to know how much credit, that QB deserves?
          ..
          How much credit should a QB who after over a decade still makes the most costly boneheaded mistakes that any coach with accountability would only tolerate in rookies?
          ..
          How much credit should a QB get who has only played a full season once, yet thinks that taking hits and refusing to slide makes him tough or cool? any DOPE who is always injured, yet doesn’t friggin understand that you can chose to slide and not get touched is just a fool that I have seen enough of trying to lead our team. Especially after the injuries he has taken diving instead of head first instead of sliding. How much credit should this man get who doesn’t even have a chance of playing 16games NO MATTER HOW GOOD THE OFFENSIVE LINE IS THAT YOU PUT AROUND HIM?

          How much credit should a guy who only won 1 playoff game get?
          ..
          I’m curious..because I see a whole lot of Flash, and jaw dropping raze dazzle plays throughout his career, RUINED by the DECISIONS and CHOICES he makes. I’m supposed to believe that after all these years, a new coach is gong to come in, and re-program his instincts and the way he thinks in about 6 months time, all while installing an offense drastically different then anything he has been asked to do in ten years…oh by the way, he now has to learn an entire new way of communicating, and process information and make decisions 5 times faster then he was ever asked to make…how much Faith am I supposed to have. And if we are actually honest with his career, how much credit should he actually DESERVE to get? I hear all the time how down I am on Vick.Take away the sports center highlights, there really isn’t all that much I see to be excited about…but I can list about 30 more things that scare the living Bejesus out of me. The man is a Philadelphia Eagle, so there is nothing I would love more then to be proven wrong…but how many times does this man get to Fool me, before I can decide to smarten up? He had a gat stretch of games 3 years ago..when was the last time before then that he did anything that should excite me? I’m confused? the man has played 6 good games in like 5 years and I’m not giving him enough credit?…well please, what is the proper credit to give a QB who DWARFS his competitors in physical ability and experience who we aren’t even sure can beat out a 3rd round pick with 6 games of experience?….I really wonder how a guy like Bill Parcels would judge mike Vick of the past 5 years

        • Dolores Guyer

          You’re right you don’t get it! It’s not just about experience , longevity or even athleticism. But knowing what the defense is giving you. Than react quickly, decisviely and accurately to move the chains. Kelly doesn’t care how long you have been in the league. What you did in another offense. He cares about how the QB executes HIS offense to his satisfaction.

          He has said repeatedly the requirements he holds most accountable for the one who ends up being the QB.

          Vick has the most pressure because he is the veteran. But he should also be able to beat anyone of these guys out . However, if reports are to be believed, he is not doing so. I find it hard to imagine Vick turning over an entirely new leaf and just playing as the game plan is scripted. He has relied on his athelticism his entire career. Old habits die hard…and some never die.
          In the early part of 2010, Vick played the best ball of his entire career. But as the season progressed Vick reverted more and more back to his old way of doing it his way, what made him feel the most comfortable and what he believed would make him the most successful. Even though it wasn’t most of the time. My belief is should Vick win the competition, it will only be a matter of time before he resorts to being the Vick that he feels the most comfortable being…and we have seen how sucessful he has been being that QB.
          As for Foles, it’s been reported that Kelly uses the strength of the QB . Foles according to some is not experienced at the read option ( though Nick has said he has played some read option both in high school and collage). That they have been running it with him in these camps and is comfortable with it . It’s been reported that Nick has made some pretty nice deep pass completeions in this mini camp. So it is obvious that he has been working very diligently on improving in that area. He is also been said to be running after practices. So obviously he is making every effort to improve in areas that were questionable of him last year.
          I dond’t know who will end up being the named starter. Whomever it turns out to be I hope we can rely on to last the season and give us good games.

          • GEagle

            Vick is wired to swing for the homer. Under fire how long can you actually expect him to stay Discaplined, keep bunting(taking the defined throw chip provides him) ignoring is instincts?…I had ZERO faith before OTAs..and since then, I don’t recall reading anything that would change my mind

          • aub32

            So Kelly utilizing the strength of a QB only works in the favor of Foles? You’re right. I don’t get that. So if Vick wins the QB competition are you implying Kelly won’t tailor the game plan to help him. The logic used by some of you Foles’ supporters is laughable. I admit Vick is far from perfect, but I don’t go around making up HOF projections based on a couple games, in which Foles was mediocre, nor do I bring up how changes will benefit one player and not the others. The truth is every QB on this team will benefit if Kelly just gives the ball to McCoy more, but that applies to every QB, not just Foles.

            And yes Foles has made some nice completions in mini camp. He has also overthrown plaers going against air on numerous occasions, but of course we will ignore that because it’s not in favor of Foles.

            I get Vick’s faults. I know what he is, and that doesn’t need to be explained. What I don’t get is easily fans are jumping on the Foles band wagon after only what they saw last year and some plays he completed in shorts.

          • joe

            Probably because it’s practical. What would be best for the team: a 33 yr-old playing well or a 24 yr-old? People rooting for Vick and against Foles make no sense. It would be great if we had a young QB to hitch our wagon to. It would be less great to hitch it to a 33 yr-old with injury issues (as well as a plethora of other issues). What’s the upside of Vick playing well in 2013 while Foles and Barkley sit?

          • Tumtum

            If you read my response to the first post you will see where I stand at the moment on the QB battle.

            The upside of whoever winning the QB battle playing well is that the team will do well. Young guys sitting and developing is not detrimental to them. Ask Aaron Rodgers.

          • http://www.facebook.com/stephen.stempo Stephen Stempo

            Well you could actually say what you don’t see in foles using reasoned arguments other than “I seen it with my eyes.”

            And as for the Straw-man you keep erecting can we put that to bed? No one is saying FOLES is a HOF QB just that he’s better than Vick. Last i checked there’s probably about 20-30 other QB’s in the league who we can make the same claim about.

        • http://www.facebook.com/stephen.stempo Stephen Stempo

          Listen. I love Vicks story I am so happy he seems to have gotten his life on track. I am. I love those kinds of stories, but I never thought Vick was that good a QB. He’s a great athlete, sure. That’s worth a few wins. I had hoped in 2010 that he had gotten it. It looked like he was willing to stand in the pocket and make throws and maybe Reid was rubbing off on him. It turned out he was still beatble the same way he was in atlanta. Pressure him, make him run and then hit him. He falls for it every time. You don’t win in the NFL with a QB who can run. You win in the NFL with a QB who can complete passes and limit turnovers. Running is a bonus. RG3 can run, but Vick isn’t even on the same planet as RG3 in terms of quarterbacking ability same with Wilson. Vick has always been a faster more elusive version of Tim Tebow. Great cannon I admit whenever Vick throws the ball My eyes go wide. It’s such a laser. I so wanted 2010 to be a watershed year for Vick. You know what happened though? For some reason a lot of vick fans started getting on about how the Eagles need to let Vick run when he started struggling especially the latter half of that season and 2011. People said “Vick is thinking too much.”,and “Vick needs to tuck it and run more and use his athleticism.” Just no. Vick the “Running QB” will not win, and honestly is exciting but not very good or reliable. Vick the QB”who can/will run but” (or move around in the pocket etc.) Could win a lot, but for some reason people don’t think that. They think that we need to let him go, let him make plays. This isn’t the playground.

      • Tumtum

        You bring up a good point about Vick’s experience with the option route. Heavily reliable on pre-snap reads. Requires timing where the ball is out before the receiver makes his cut in a lot of cases. If there is any similarity to reading blitzes (and to me there is very little difference), Vick could really be at a disadvantage. I know he has taken issue with the notion that he can’t read defenses. Sorry I just don’t buy it.

        I have never seen an NFL QB completely miss obviously blitzing corners… and repeatedly, other than Vick that is. I mean maybe he does see them, but just chooses to completely ignore them and assume they are going to get blocked.

        This off-season is a roller coaster of emotion! First I was ready to be rid of Vick and his turnovers, despite my admiration for his heart. Then I was really excited about the potential (why is it always potential with Vick) of Vick in CK’s offense. Now I feel like there is no way Vick can run the offense. That’s depressing on a few levels. Mainly because I was hoping we would walk away from the best of multiple good options after this QB battle. I would hate to see the job go to a guy because he wasn’t as bad as the other guys.

        • Tumtum

          I’m over reacting for effect btw.. but you get it.

          • GEagle

            No worries. I do the same thing. Im just tired of watching the same crap, then making the same excuses, then getting burned all over again. If we have to be bad again, I prefer it being with a kid who has a chance at correcting his mistakes with a decade of playing time unlike this MIRAGE, figment of our immagination, Mike Vick. i cant take another season of the same crap!

    • HipDaDip

      In this sense, I think Vick was much more of a fit with the philosophy of Andy/Marty than Chip. My impression is that Andy often opted to take a shot down field with a lower chance of success rather than settle for a safer option. I feel like I was constantly frustrated watching the Eagles go for a 20 yd pass on 2nd and 7, only to force their hand on 3rd down. It sounds like Chip would rather grind away and take 3 or 4 yards in that situation to boost the chances of keeping the drive alive. I think Vick shares the philosophy of Andy, seeing a broken play as a benefit to the offense that needs to be exploited (look at all this time I have!!!) where Chip might see it as a level playing field between the offense and defense (losing the advantage the offense had in terms of organization).

      • http://www.facebook.com/stephen.stempo Stephen Stempo

        I wonder hos much of that is on Vick. So hard to tell, but McNabb and Foles seemed to use the slot receiver and tight ends way more than vick. Can’t tell if that’s design, progression, the better safe than sorry attitude donovan seemed to have. (he didn’t thow a lot of picks), Vicks definitely more of a gambler it seems and Andy did seem to nurture that part of him. Not sure where to get the stats im sure someone has done it i’d love to see how often Vick went deep per game vs Foles and even McNabb (who would have been way better if when he checked down it wasn’t a freaking laser.)

        Could be a height thing too Vick seemed to use the middle of the field less unless he had rolled out or the play broke down. I often wondered why we didn’t see more of the drew brees stuff from NO where they bootlegg brees out so he can get a clear look. Again it’s so hard to tell in the NFL where that’s coming from in an organization.

        • Mac

          Andy gets the bet on the table, add in Marty and you’re doubled down on long ball, add in Vick and there is no turning back.Childress and McNabb held it back enough to balance things out.

    • T_S_O_P

      I was about to make a post about ‘broken plays’, in which it would seem that Vick excels and how that would fit with Chip. Thanks for the info before hand.

  • Iskar36

    Maybe it’s just me, but there are two parts to this post that make me do a double take.

    “Vick has enormous potential, but you cannot ignore the problems”

    Vick is absolutely a physically gifted QB, but at 33, how are we still talking about “potential?” At this point of his career, he is capable of making minor adjustments to his game, but I think what we have seen over the last couple of years is largely what we will get. I just don’t see any enormous potential left in Vick. Enormous athletic ability, enormous arm, enormous speed; all of those I fully buy, but potential? I just don’t see it.

    “Chip Kelly is not looking for the most talented QB. That would be Vick, by far. Race over.”

    This is the other part that made me do a double take. If reports from camp are true, and we go by the paragraph you just posted by Graziano, are we sure Vick is the most NFL talented QB on the team? Again, if you want to modify “talented” with “athletically talented”, or “physically gifted” then yes, Vick wins that race. Still I think when you say “most talented QB,” accuracy, getting rid of the ball quickly, avoiding sacks, doing all the little things CK wants is part of that talent. From that standpoint, I think that makes the question a lot more difficult to answer right now. I don’t think Vick wins that race hands down, in fact, as you pointed out, Foles has shown so far (albeit in the first 12 laps of the race), that he is winning that race.

    • TommyLawlor

      RE: Potential

      If Vick ever puts all the pieces together, he can be a dynamic player. It does sound funny to use “potential” in regard to such a veteran player, but I still don’t think Vick has shown how good he can truly be. Will that change?

      Remember that John Elway thrived under Shanahan late in his career. Steve Young didn’t become a good starter until age 31.

      Sometimes really gifted QBs develop bad habits that hurt their play. It takes the right coach and/or circumstances to bring the most out of them.
      ______________

      RE: Talent

      You’re talking about QB skills. Accuracy isn’t talent. It is a QB skill. Talent is a natural gift. You have it or you don’t. Vick has talent. What he lacks are polished QB skills.

      As we’ve discussed over the years, Vick is so talented that he’s been able to get away with not having polished skills. As he gets older and the talent diminishes a little, he will need the skills to make up for that.

      If I said who is the better QB, Foles or Vick…that would be the tough question to answer.

      Who has more talent? Vick, in a landslide. There are things he can do now that Foles can only dream of.

    • TommyLawlor

      RE: Potential

      If Vick ever puts all the pieces together, he can be a dynamic player. It does sound funny to use “potential” in regard to such a veteran player, but I still don’t think Vick has shown how good he can truly be. Will that change?

      Remember that John Elway thrived under Shanahan late in his career. Steve Young didn’t become a good starter until age 31.

      Sometimes really gifted QBs develop bad habits that hurt their play. It takes the right coach and/or circumstances to bring the most out of them.
      ______________

      RE: Talent

      You’re talking about QB skills. Accuracy isn’t talent. It is a QB skill. Talent is a natural gift. You have it or you don’t. Vick has talent. What he lacks are polished QB skills.

      As we’ve discussed over the years, Vick is so talented that he’s been able to get away with not having polished skills. As he gets older and the talent diminishes a little, he will need the skills to make up for that.

      If I said who is the better QB, Foles or Vick…that would be the tough question to answer.

      Who has more talent? Vick, in a landslide. There are things he can do now that Foles can only dream of.

      • atb124

        I was actually coming here to post almost the exact same thing as Iskar re: talent.

        I guess it’s a semantics issue, but I disagree with this use of the word “talent”. And just focussing on the word and its meaning rather than the QBs here.

        All QBs are constantly working on their accuracy, yet, some are much more accurate than others. Some have it, some don’t.

        All QBs are being taught how to read defenses. Some are great at it, some much less so. QBs are always working on touch, pocket awareness, field vision, eye discipline etc. Some are better than others because that have more talent for those things.

        We can all take a calculus class and work equally hard at it, but some are just going to be naturally better at it, due to talent. Talent doesn’t have to be an obvious physical attribute.
        I believe the way Tommy is using the word “talent” is by far the most common and accepted use of the term. I just don’t think it’s the right one.

        Loved the article as always. Just nitpicking on a single word out of the whole thing.

        • Cool Lester Smooth

          Yeah, I like to use the word “tools” myself, since I’m more of a baseball guy, and I think the word helps distinguish the physical abilities of a player from the more intangible parts of a player’s talent, such as their approach.

        • Michael Winter Cho

          As a musician, I agree that “talent” is a hard word to agree upon. I am a 20 year vet who works on my skills for hours a day, but some 12 year olds who have only been playing a few years have better technical skills, ie, they can play scales faster or louder or more accurately. There is one player in particular, who is known for essentially never making any mistakes, although he does not practice any harder than anyone else. The distinction and interplay between skill and talent is vague.

          • Mac

            +1

        • Iskar36

          I think you and I view it the same way, and you put it a lot better than I managed to in my post.

          Ultimately though, I agree it is a matter of semantics.

        • aub32

          I definitely agree with you here. The ability to process information quickly is definitely talent in my opinion. My only problem is that fans are very quick to say Foles beats out Vick in these mental categories. It was very obvious that the offensive scheme switched drastically when Foles took the helm. Yes, he threw a high volume of passes, but his attempts were mostly screens and dumpoffs. This in my opinion led to inflated stats. Had Foles been charged with running the down the field offense Vick ran, he would have undoutedly been much worse, as his accuracy past 12 yards at that time was very poor. And though no improvement has been seen in this aspect during a game, it’s assumed by many fans he’s fixed this because he completed some bombs in shorts, not to mention the glossing over of near picks and deep ball struggles when throwing to uncovered receivers. In addition, his other mistakes such as turning the ball over and staring down receivers are assumed to be fixed as well. And this isn’t a “but he was a rookie debate” these are things that need to be fixed for him to be a starter. So where I agree mental prowess is definitely a guage in which to measure QBs. We have no clear answer who is ahead in this category. However, we can all agree when it comes to physical gifts, no QB on this roster is even close.

          • Cool Lester Smooth

            Vick actually threw a higher percentage of 1-10 yard passes than did Foles.

          • atb124

            I think a lot of fans, including myself, “think” Foles has the edge in the mental aspects based on a number of factors.** I know there are hardline people on both sides that will present these beliefs or their opposite as facts, but I generally try not to go there.

            “However, we can all agree when it comes to physical gifts, no QB on this roster is even close.”
            Unless you consider “repetative accuracy” to be a physical gift, in which case, people can debate that all day long if they don’t have any work to do.

            **Factors such as week to week improvement, the “eye test”, and at the very worst, similar results to Vick despite a weaker arm and a tremendous gap in experience.

      • Cool Lester Smooth

        Vick is kind of the BJ Upton of football, isn’t he? (Or, if you want to be less generous, the Delmon Young.)

        He’s got every tool you could ask for but, for whatever reason, he’s incapable of putting it all together for an extended period of time. Still, every now and then he’ll go on an insane hot streak that reminds everyone of why they were so excited about him in the first place.

      • joe

        I love ya Tommy but I think you’re trying too hard to be unbiased and it’s showing. You just compared Vick to John Elway and Steve Young.

      • Iskar36

        In terms of the talent, I understand your argument and it certainly is a reasonable one. Ultimately it comes down to semantics, but as atb124 put it, I do think there is a talent aspect to accuracy and the “QB skills” you mentioned.

        In terms of potential, I guess it is also a semantics argument, and in some ways I guess it is tied to the talent/QB skills argument. To me, he has tapped out his potential when it comes to arm strength and mobility, and his ability to improve his “talent” or “QB skills” with things like accuracy, timing, decision-making is also limited. That’s not to say he is terrible at any of these things or that he can’t win the job with the skills he has, but I just don’t think that if he wins the job, we are going to be talking about a guy that is even close to his 2010 form, let alone a player with enormous untapped potential. I just think we know approximately what we are going to get with Vick.

  • barneygoogle

    A couple things here. Let’s remember that Vick started getting hurt early last year–so this thing could be decided by who is healthy after training camp. Vick might be at the age where he is starting to break down.
    The second, bigger thing– is defense! We need to try and get inside Coach Kelly’s head. Does he think he can win 9 games with Vick (and this defense), and maybe sneak into the playoffs? Maybe.
    Or does he see this as a 6 or 7 win type of year due to the defense, and think more about the future. If so, might he trade or cut Vick early, and go with Foles and Barkley the rest of the way? And shoot for 2014, with a defense oriented draft next year?
    I bet the QB decision (in part), will be based on whether Kelly thinks he has a good enough defense to compete for the playoffs now. If not—who wants to go
    6-10 with Vick? What would that prove? Better to move on.

    • TommyLawlor

      I think Kelly will go with the better QB, but if he feels like they are basically equal, you’re right about expectations and the future playing into the decision.

      • http://www.facebook.com/stephen.stempo Stephen Stempo

        I’ll take that a bit further Tommy. I think Vick is going to have to be exceptionally better. You don’t start a 33 year old injury prone QB (with a 1 year deal) who’s just a little better because it’s not like there’s a whole lot of room for improvement there. If Vick can’t take us deep into the playoffs this year it’s a fairly easy decision.

        This is nothing against vick, I don’t even like that it’s about vick. It’s more about numbers. Are you going to give vick 3 years guaranteed if he plays well the first half of this season? That’s what he’ll want probably. That’s a huge risk for an injury prone 34 year old QB. This is why I think Vick is going to have to look like a sure fire pro bowler OR Foles is going to have to look like he’s regressed since he completed 60% of his passes last year and if you ignore the Washington game (which admittedly is cherry picking but being that it was so bad I think it’s fair to say it was the exception) His comp is up around 64% and is Rating is about 86.

        Vick this year is like you said he’s a lottery ticket/ insurance policy and i think Chip Cashed in the insurance part of it when Barkley fell to him in the fourth.

  • GEagle

    I don’t think there is any way Vick will win chip over.nI don’t see how it’s even possible. can anyone imagine Bill Bellicik putting up with Vicks Undiscaplined boneheaded crap? The problem is how people DEFINE QB TALENT. It’s the most cerebral position in sports. Isaac sopoaga has a cannon and can throw thrall 70yards. Does that make him a more talented QB then Barkley?

    fact of the matter is that Foles, Barkley, Vick all have a skill set that has been successful in the NFL at one time or another…Mental make up is what will define this race. We have seen too many times what good all of Vicks wonderful physical talent can get you, when he isn’t mentally sharp.

    I just don’t see Chip putting up with the crap that Andy put up with. If I can’t see Vick playing for an intelligent demanding Bellicek, then I can’t see Vick playing for Chip. Just too Undiscaplined…

    Now the loyalist will point out how Vick finally learned how to hold a ball, hahaha…Really? BecAuse since Vick made that genus statement, I have counted atleAst 3 times during practices that Kelly had to scream at Vick about the way he was carrying it. Vick might improve in practice, in meeting rooms, but she. H is in live action, his instincts will take over, and Chip won’t put up with the LAck of discapline, and maddening, mistakes that just shot us in the foot over and over again these past two years.
    ..
    In my eyes, the only thing that Vick is good for, is pushing Foles to step up, elevate his game, and take his job.

    • TommyLawlor

      You’re overlooking a key point. Kelly brought Vick back.

      Don’t act as if Kelly had Vick forced upon him. Chip looked around and saw their weren’t great choices. He then got Howie to talk contract and Vick agreed to a reasonable deal that gave protection to both sides.

      Chip knew who Vick was when the deal was signed. Holding the ball too long, turnovers, and inconsistent play were all on tape. There were no secrets.

      Chip thought the gamble was worth it because of how naturally gifted Vick is (as well as experienced). Chip wanted a chance to work with Vick and to see what he could do.

      You don’t like Vick and that’s fine. I easily understand that. Just know that Kelly is keeping an open mind and Vick can definitely win this job and be the starting QB.

      • GEagle

        Why wouldn’t he have brought Vick back? When you don’t have a clear cut franchise guy, you SHOULD be trying to collect as much talent as you can, and hope one works out. Foles always had potential, but he isn’t some clear cut top 10 franchise to where a new coach shouldn’t be trying to bring in other talent…Vick was comparable to what was on the Market: Alex smith, Flynn..only Vick didn’t cost a big extension, and draft picks..coming into a team, before getting to see how much Foles would a very good move IMO. But come one?If chip had any confidence and Vick was his guy, we would have signed him to more them a 1 year deal. Vick was brought back as stop gap insurance in case Foles wasn’t ready to be his 16 game QB…the whole Chip brought back Vick, doesn’t say as much to me as it does to others. I just think Vick was an emergency stop gap.
        ..
        I know this is an open competition. And just because what I think will happen is that Foles wipes the floor with him, it doesn’t mean I just want starting jobs handed out in April. if Vick wins the starting competition, then I WANT VICK to be the QB. I would have preferred just giving Foles the year to prove if we should move forward with him, or look for help in the 2014 draft…but once you brought back Vick, you have to give him a chance to win the job. As much as I want to find out who Foles is, saying its an open competition, yet not anointing the player who plays the best, is not good for our locker room. So although I wAnt to see what Foles can do, Vick should be the QB if he can outplay Foles…I just don’t think it’s going to happen…
        ..

        • TommyLawlor

          That’s fine. You opened the previous remark with:

          “I don’t think there is any way Vick will win chip over. I don’t see how it’s even possible.”

          That statement makes it sound as if Chip doesn’t like Vick and has no interest in him. Clearly that isn’t the case.

          This is a competition and we will see who wins it. Arguments can be made both ways.

          • GEagle

            Yeah in my mind(my projections)…of course in reality there is a chance. I just know that young kids, who work their tail off to be good, IMPROVE..and I think making less mistakes is more important to chip, then making those big flashy plays…the real competition hasn’t started yet, and Foles is far from an established franchise QB, so in reality, Vick could very well be our QB…but my “projection”, guess, hypothesis…is that Foles will wipe the floor with Vick. I been saying it since January, why abandon it now? But since I do believe this is a very real open competition, and Foles has yet to prove what I believe he is capable of, Vick can absolutely win this job. I just don’t expect it to happen

            Poor choice of wording by me. My bad, I should know better by now.

          • aub32

            I’m just curious why you think the ceiling is so high for Foles. I’m not rooting against the kid but you talk about him as if he’s destined for the HOF. The kid has his share of problems and didn’t even measure up to his peers last year. I really just don’t get what you saw.

          • Cool Lester Smooth

            It’s John G., you probably don’t really want to know what he’s thinking, haha.

            Personally, I think Foles has the potential to be an above average QB in the Joe Flacco mold for the next 10 years. Vick, meanwhile, has spent his entire career showing that he’s not capable of that sort of consistency.

            Nick Foles won’t lose you a football game; with the talent the Eagles have in their backfield, that’s what I want out of my QB.

          • aub32

            I’m sorry but I can’t say that. Where is this coming from?? “Nick Foles won’t lose you a football game” Based on what?? Him winning so many. I get that you may want a safe QB, and I am fine with anyone who has that preference, but where does the notion come from that Foles is that guy. He took risks. He turned the ball over plenty. Flacco loses games with terrible and inconsistent play. Yet Foles is a guy who won’t lose them for you. Someone please help me make sense of where all this is coming from. I’m not trying to hate on or condemn the guy, but come on. The guy was ok as a rookie. He didn’t wow anyone. He didn’t protect the football in favor of being conservative. All these benefits of the dount are being given to Foles because he looks the part? Outside of that I can’t see where these statements are coming from.

          • Cool Lester Smooth

            Well, I’ll take someone who was OK as a rookie over someone who was no better in his 10th year in the league any day of the week and twice on Sunday. But hey, to each his own.

            And Foles’ INT% was 1.9 last year; tied with Peyton Manning and Flacco for 5th in the league. He was extremely safe with the football. Most importantly, he threw the ball away when there was no play to be made. He actually had a lower Sack% than Vick despite not playing a single snap behind Herremans or Kelce.

            And if by “looks the part” you mean “showed excellent poise and surprising functional mobility in the pocket, while avoiding making dumb mistakes,” then I would absolutely say that Foles is getting the benefit of the doubt because he looks the part.

          • http://www.facebook.com/stephen.stempo Stephen Stempo

            well you’re arguing with the wrong fans. My personal bias isn’t that I think Foles is amazing it’s that you have no evidence that Foles will NEVER be any good.

          • aub32

            There’s a big difference in “never will be any good” and should be the starter in 2013. I do think Foles has potential, but I find it hard to believe the guy I saw last year is ready to take the helm.

          • http://www.facebook.com/stephen.stempo Stephen Stempo

            Interestingly I think the same thing about Vick.

          • GEagle

            No, no, no…I don’t have this ever dying faith in Foles. I have NO CLUE what he can become. MY honest inclination of him, is because of the poise he displayed, he has a chance, and more then anything I would like to see what he can do in his 2nd year(very important and telling year in QB development), in an environment where he isn’t already set up to fail. It’s not so much that I have this faith that I know what Foles can be. It’s that I’m friggin TIRED of allowing Vick to make a fool out of me. When the hell is it enough? Played 6 good games in 5 years. No one would ever be given all these damn chances. I’m tired. No more. IN my mind, what I’m convinced Vick is, does not warrant seeing what an encouraging unknown can do. Simple as that. Foles has teased me with enough, that I would rather find out and fail with him, then to let this LIMITED BONEHEAD fool me for another year. Anyone is entitled to disagree. that’s just where I’m at with it. I would rather win 7 games with Foles, then 11 with Vick..Foles can improve. Vick is fools gold

          • aub32

            I had a long post in which I was going to debate your points, but then I reread your post and realized what you wrote. “I would rather win 7 games with Foles, then 11 with Vick” Any fan that feels this way cares more about their guy and having it done their way. Therefore, my points are wasted on you and I will not bother discussing the matter on this or any other post with. What kind of fan would rather have their team lose and not even have a shot just because they don’t like a player. Continue with your narrow mindedness and name calling if you wish. I’d rather discuss with more rational fans.

          • cliff henny

            heard the arguement 7 wins with vick, 5 with foles, that has some merit…but 11, that’s a home playoff game. problems with hypotheticals, your point can get tripped up. sure geagle would sell his mother for a chance at a super bowl, lol

          • GEagle

            Cliff…If a football God came down from the heavens to visit me and said I’m going to take away either Vick or Foles..You can keep Vick and he will provide you with an exciting two seasons, he won’t get hurt and will lead you all the way to the Super Bowl, but you won’t win it…or you can have Foles and Barkley far from sure shot QBs, and the God isn’t going to tell me anything about Their future other then they have some potential….I’m going to take the Kid who I don’t know what his limits are yet, over a good but NOT good enough QB ANYDAY!! Not all fans and franchises will feel this way, but I was in Jaxonville watching McNabb puke..I was at all the home NFC championship losses…I have witnessed close but no cigar too many times, that I can’t accept someone who can be a good but limited QB..

            Vick can make all the big plays in the world..But I don’t ever see him not making enough costly dumb plays to go on a 4 game playoff streak and beat Ryan, Wilson, Kapernick, and Peyton/Flacco/or Brady…and if I already know you aren’t capable of that, what’s the point…

            It’s better to have Foles, who could be nothing more then a career backup, but who at this point I don’t know what his limits are, and who it’s actually fair to PROJECT what he can become since he hasn’t been a starter for a friggin decade

          • cliff henny

            well, think regardless who plays this year, we’re qb shopping in ’14, so give me the guy who if everything clicks can win SB this year. to me, that’s Vick. yes, 1% chance, but a chance. think you can win with Foles, but i just cant project an elite qb. trust me, nothing would make me happier than him becoming Brady II. felt since day kelly was signed, future qb was in’14 draft. i appreciate your position, it aint easy being a eagle fan

          • aub32

            Cliff he knows what he’s saying. Clearly he prefers his guy over team success. No point in further discussion in my opinion.

          • cliff henny

            yeah, he came in right after i posted. can argue the ‘who’ all day, but the end it’s only about W’s. Geagle has some strong opinions, will give him that.

          • GEagle

            A fucking fan who is actually trying To fucking build something the right way for once, so that maybe He doesn’t have to go another 30 years without knowing what a stinking Super Bowl win feels like. that kind of Fan…not the moron that is content with a fools Gold 11 win season with a QB we already know will NEVER go on to out play 4 top QBs to win a SB…THAT FAN!!! Fans that understand that SB win, won’t happen overnight. fans that realize you have to build and DEVELOPE IT!!! But hey, if you continue to like your football played like a game of madden, and continue giving 6million chances to a friggin Idiot…well to each his own. Im trying to win a Super Bowl. 11 wins don’t mean a damn thing to me if I can already see limits!!!

          • GEagle

            In your oppinion can you win a SB with Vick?

            In your oppinion, would Bill Bellicek tolerate Vick after these past two years?

            In your oppinion, how would Bill Parcels judge Vick at this point in time?

            Vick spent the past two seasons looking more like Mark Sanchez then a franchise QB..when does potential go out the window and you are what you are? I swear I can’t recall a single friggin athlete in my life that after 10 years we are still holding our breath waiting for potential. pull the friggin Plug! I had enough! Ticket sales reflect the same thing!! Did you not hear the 90% of radio callers today who flat out said that they are waiting to find out who the QB is before they buy tickets, and that they will not pay to go watch Vick?

            sorry, after only providing 7 good games in the past 5 years, IM DONE WITH YOUR POTENTIAL!

          • A Roy

            Tommy
            Although yours is the primary Eagles blog I follow, I also read Sheil and a couple others. I’ve stopped reading comments and responding on those because GEagle shouts down everyone and monopolizes the forum. Please don’t let that happen here. Please. I enjoy reading ACViking, Ishtar, et al and don’t want your blog similarly trashed. Bar GEagle until he can act like an adult.

          • http://www.facebook.com/stephen.stempo Stephen Stempo

            it’d be fun to see you debate points, i’ve seen a lot of you saying “what i saw” with Foles. Which to me is like listening to someone explain their annoying ghost story. Yeah sure you saw a ghost, with your own eyes… oooh. show me.

          • Mac

            Actually, Foles matches up pretty favorably against his peers.

          • http://www.facebook.com/stephen.stempo Stephen Stempo

            Yeah that is a made up statement Foles matched up pretty well aainst rookie QB’s through their first 8 games who started year 1 over the last 12 years. I’ll find the chart if you like.

          • http://www.facebook.com/stephen.stempo Stephen Stempo

            Again If you can site me any source or commentor or blog that says even half seriously that they think Foles is destined for the hall of fame I will Eat a bowl full of broken Glass.’

            It’s easy to defeat that argument, the hard argument to defeat is that today Foles is probably better than Vick

          • GEagle

            Absolutely. I totally believe chip that this is an open competition and that the best man will play. Number of reps suggest he is telling the truth. I just personally don’t expect Vick to win. Vick has been performing like Gabbert,Ponders of the world. i have reached a point where I am done being burned by projecting what Vick can be. At what point are you are, what you are?
            ..
            I can see projecting how a young kid with 6 games under his belt will play…but at what point do we have enough data on Vick to stop projecting, and judge based on the reality of how he has actually performed?

      • Tom33

        Clearly, Vick COULD win the job, but I just don’t think he will based on his track record. Taking what the defense gives you, quick decision-making and repetitive accuracy are not, and have never been, his strengths. If this is what Chip is looking for, he will have to go other places than #7.

        As far as why they brought him back — as you said there were not a lot of better choices out there. In addition, the timing between Kelly’s hiring and the date the roster bonus was due was about 3 weeks and they had a lot of things to figure out and do. Had they not reworked the deal they would have had to cut him outright or been on the hook for $3 million without knowing what else they had. This way, for only another $500K (not my money thankfully) they essentially get to see what he can bring. And as you mention, his physical abilities are very tantalizing.

        I still stand by my prediction that he is not on the opening day roster. Foles will be the starter, Barkley the #2, and Dixon will be the #3 (essentially a younger, more athletic Trent Edwards). And as I said last week, I hope Vick plays really well this summer and wins the job outright. He just won’t win it by default like he would like.

        • GEagle

          I’ll Co-sign that. Foles, Barkley, Dixon

  • Mike Flick

    The read option does not mean the QB runs.

    Based off of a defender the QB optionally hands it off to the RB. If he pulls back, he can then throw a WR screen in the location of the DE that has crashed down on the RB. Or pitch it out to another RB or WR who was in motion.

    It seems like everyone only knows the RB option where the QB runs to the outside.

    • TommyLawlor

      Right. But the QB must execute the play smoothly whether he keeps the ball or not. The play only works if the QB can sell that he might run. Handling the ball and then exchange must be clean. Sounds like Foles struggled with that stuff. That is why I said he needs to find a RB and practice.

      And every bit of running he does can’t hurt.

  • GEagle

    Chip in regards to the QB battle and making Vick compete said If a guy can’t come into camp, be mentally tough enough to win a job, how am I supposed to play him in front of 60,000 fans when the going gets tough?

    hard to argue with that line of thinking, which is why I think it was really foolish for Vick to publicly lose his cool over the battle,
    ..
    We crush the national guys, but someone who is just awesome that never gets credit is Beasly Reese. Today he practically echoed my thoughts about Cary being a jerk, basically about how that I don’t give a crap about he fans is exactly the mentality a corner needs to have to be successful. A former CB himself, Beasly said that’s EXACTLY how you have to be wired. His only problem with Cary was that he shouldn’t have stated that publicly

    • http://www.facebook.com/stephen.stempo Stephen Stempo

      Well, duh. I think most NFL players have that mentality, we’re talking about WORLD CLASS athletes, the best of the best, a certain amount of arrogance is required to succeed at this level. Yes some are able to fake humility better than others but there’s no all pro’s who are trully humble in their mind, they all know how damned good they are that’s what drives them.

      Cary’s issue is that he said something, he engaged the fans, and he engaged them in a negative way he basically invited them to have an opinion, you don’t do that. It makes the fall harder and makes thos post game pressers more of a pain in the ass. Sometimes it’s ok to act tough, most of the time it’s better to grin and shut up and , well, lie.

      • GEagle

        you certainly wont see me argue that there is any upside to what Cary did. But after after the pathetic corners I watched, I wouldnt care if Cary punted Puppies off a bridge like Jack black did to Ron Burgandy in Anchore man, as long as he can fight and compete for us at a competant level. Nnamdi had the fanfare, Nnamdi was a class act, Nnamndi did so much good in the community…NNAMDI WAS A PUSSY FRAUD! Ill take the anti Nnamdi all day if he can play on the field….Just trying to find some silver lining in a dumb situation

        • http://www.facebook.com/stephen.stempo Stephen Stempo

          Maybe. And I hear that argument hear and on the radio. Usually from a certain segment of fans. I Think Cary is fool’s gold though… Is he really that good? Can we really use the term good to describe Cary? Or is serviceable a better term? Here’s a player who got released after winning a SB and got a bigger contract than he probably deserved from a team starved for CB help.

          I don’t think Cary has really earned the benefit of the doubt. I’m not even convinced he wins a starting job.

  • ACViking

    Re: Vick’s 2010 versus the Past Two Seasons

    T-Law:

    You wrote that “Vick underachieved the last 2 years.”

    That’s true if 2010 is your benchmark. Vick — for 11+ games (missed 4+ due to injury and being No. 2 to Kolb in the opener) — had, arguably, his best season.

    If, on the other hand, you compare Vick’s numbers from 2011 and 2012 to his pre-2010 numbers, he arguably delivered a fairly standard performance in terms of TDs and INTs and even fumbles. (His rushing yards were down, but his completion percentage was up.)

    We exchanged comments last week about Vick’s 2010 season. During that year, Vick (i) started off as the best QB in the NFL, (ii) then he slid into a Top 5 QB, and (iii) finally ended up being a mildly better version of the old Michael Vick. But since the second Giants’ game on 12/19/10, he’s continued to struggle with the blitz and especially, after the next week, the CB blitz.

    As you wrote in your comment last week, the NFL had figured him out. And, consequently, in 2011 and 2012, you could argue his numbers regressed to the mean established over his career (except for completion percentage).

    On the other hand, in 2010 Vick arguably hit his max potential for 9 games. He could be so good that Steve Young nearly birthed a calf on national TV.

    So if those 9 games in 2010 are your benchmark, then I agree Vick’s underachieved the past two years.

    Or did Vick just have a great run aided by a few good bounces?

    • TommyLawlor

      That’s really a complex question because of the vastly different circumstances. Vick didn’t get very good coaching early on. He also had a terrible attitude. The inconsistent product back then was due to work habits, coachability and on-field sloppiness.

      Comparing ATL-Vick and PHI-Vick is really hard to do.

      Vick embraced his coaching in 2009-2010. He did have some good luck with turnovers in 2010. Certainly don’t dispute that.

      I guess with 2011 and 2012 I’m holding him to a standard based on my expectations. I didn’t expect a 100 QB rating, but the turnovers and terrible decisions were worse than I would have reasonably feared.

      • ACViking

        What was the basis for your expectations? Was it 2010?

        Or more complicated . . . including (i) Vick’s seeming openness to being coached, (ii) the reputation of Reid and Marty as QB gurus, and (iii) better talent around him?

        The reason I ask is that the foundation for the expectations formed by you would be (I think) grounded in the kind of data that coaches and scouts use. So sharing that gives us a chance to better form our own expectations (if we put in the time).

        • TommyLawlor

          I am talking about 2010. I’m not focused on the explosive WAS and NYG games. Those kind of crazy plays are fools gold, as we saw.

          There were other games where I think Vick showed real potential as a true QB.

          Maybe the best game he’s played as an Eagle was the 2011 win over DAL, 34-7. Vick made good pre-snap reads. He was 21-28-279 with 2 TDs. 7-50 as a runner. That game came after some inconsistent performances. I thought maybe the lockout had hurt him and Vick was ready to take off.

          He struggled the next 2 gms, got hurt, missed 3 gms and then came back to win the last 4. His play in those games was up and down.

          I thought Vick had turned the corner for sure in early Nov of 2011, but that proved to be an anomaly. Still, it did show how good he can be when he just runs the offense and uses his head, as well as his arm and legs.

          • ACViking

            T-Law:

            You may have just explained — with hard data — why Chip Kelly brought Vick back this year.

            Excellent stuff.

          • Anders

            The worst is that while Vick was very inconsistent in the 3 wins last year, we also saw stretches during games, where Vick operate perfectly in system and made smart decisions. The funny thing is that I remember his best stretches been when we ran more of hurry up offense with simple play calling opposite when we huddled and Andy called is long plays

          • Phils Goodman

            I noticed that too. I was clamoring for more no-huddle last year, but the offensive terminology was probably too verbose to facilitate it.

          • aub32

            Thank you. Most people ignore this fact, but Vick does better in hurry up.

          • TommyLawlor

            I think they used the hurry-up vs the Ravens and he had some success.

          • http://www.facebook.com/stephen.stempo Stephen Stempo

            I think Chip Kelly’s whole system of offense is that MOST QB’s will do better in the hurry up because of the inherent advantage the offense has vs the defense.. (eaglesrewind did a good write up on offenses haveng an advantage by actually knowing the play and that hurry up offenses don’t allow defenses to make adjustments thus negating any ability the defense has to counter the offensive alingnment,)

  • Cafone

    Why is Dixon such a longshot? He only slid to the 5th round because he tore up his knee. Much like Barkley, if the situation had been different he would have gone much sooner. He’s got several years NFL experience, if not much game time. He’s been behind established QBs so that explains his lack of playing time. The knee should be completely healed.

    Why is Dixon not considered a prospect with potential equal to Foles or Barkley?

    • TommyLawlor

      Dixon has been in the NFL since 2008 and has yet to carve out a role for himself. He’s talented enough for teams to be interested in him, but not good enough to keep a job.

      I’m guessing that is for a reason.

      I would love to be wrong and to have Dixon play lights out this summer. I just think expecting that is a bit much. Hope for it, but realistically, I don’t see Dixon making the team.

      • shah8

        I think he would if Foles gets traded, for example…Dixon is not an unreasonably poor backup.

        • TommyLawlor

          I would say there is virtually no chance Foles gets traded.

          • aub32

            Are you referring to this season or ever? I am not trying to get Foles out of here, but if he does lose the QB competition and Dixon pulls a Nick Foles in preseason, which would you rather have going forward Foles or Barkley. Dixon would have a skill set similar to your starter, so he would be worth keeping, while one of the 2 youngs guys would be groomed. I know this is highly unlikely as I think the 3 QBs will be Vick Foles and Barkley going forward, but I am interested in your and others’ take on this.

          • TommyLawlor

            A lot of things would need to happen for Foles to be trade bait. Vick would have to win the job. Barkley would have to play so well that the team would be very comfortable with him. Dixon would need to play well enough to win a roster spot and push Barkley for the backup job.

            At that point, Foles would be expendable for the right price.

            I don’t see that stuff as likely to all happen. Also, the Eagles like Foles quite a bit. They might like the thought of him and Barkley as the QBs of the future.

  • shah8

    While I may be a Vick fan, in the sense that I “support” him, it’s because I want to see a proper offense in Philly. I’m not actually baffled that there is a competition. Way too many people hate his guts, and the org is putting up a dog and pony show for their benefit. The reality is that Foles probably isn’t talented enough to be a starter, period He’s not Kevin Kolb, or any of the other marginally starter capable people. Sure, he could win games, even many games a la Matt Cassel or Ponder and put up nominally reasonable stats. However, that happens when the team is good around the player and is lucky besides. When the team is not good, well, it’s not fun to watch.

    Thing is, the Vick Foles competition is about as real as the Stafford Hill competition. I’d give Foles more of a shot if I actually thought he could truly function as a starter, since he’s such a media upgrade. If Foles is what I think he is, Kelly would know from the start that the RBs had better be glorious. I don’t think Kelly will take that risk.

    • Cafone

      He played at least as well as Vick last year with more players out with injuries… as a rookie. He certainly didn’t prove he can be a reliable starter, but he didn’t prove he can’t be one either.

      I like them all, so I’m not too worried about who Kelly picks.

      One of the reason I like Foles is his size. 6’8″ is becoming the norm for lineman. It seems like it’s just going to get tougher for short guys like Vick and Barkley to see over them. Of course size only goes so far, but I am curious to see if he has the skills to match.

      Also, you may want to be careful about using the term “dog and pony show” when discussing the merits of Vick.

      • James

        Barkley is 6′ 2″ and with cleats nets him 6′ 4; since when is this considered short?

      • shah8

        While I do not trust the numbers by the various stats outfits, Foles’ deeper numbers were not good. By eye, what I saw was a QB who doesn’t have the arm to make difficult throws consistently, who tends to take a long time to pull triggers, who looks too slow on foot, and rolls out often to buy time for a defensive breakdown. He doesn’t make very many plays (the WRs often have to make the plays), and when the CBs are good, he is an outright liability since all the coverage is tight and stays that way. Foles just isn’t good enough to win against good defenses. Just saying that Foles had a mess isn’t enough to exculpate his play. Vick more or less had the same mess. So did Shady, for that matter, and both had down years. It happens. Again, a raw backup QB who looks like a potential starter looks more or less like Joe Webb in 2011. A more polished young QB looks more like Matt Schaub in 2006. At the end of the day, talent is talent is talent. A young QB generally does show you everything by about eight games. Whether he becomes a star QB depends on him showing the good, and reducing the bad. A QB that doesn’t make plays will not develop into one that does.

        I don’t care about the dogs, man. Especially when the ones that could be helped, got that help. I care about people. If you want to wave bloody banners, be my guest, and rally your friends.

        • http://www.facebook.com/stephen.stempo Stephen Stempo

          Who needs number when you have eyes!! UFO’s and bigfoot I seen em! I’m glad you could tell all thet from watching 7 games of a QB who sat on the bench for 8 games, WAS a rookie, was thrown behind an offensive line made up of pretty much guys from the corner bar, had no shady and had pretty much a lame duck coach.

          Honestly most of what you said sounds made up, since By my eye test foles did make some plays, especially in that one game what was it, i think he came back in the fourth quarter or something you might have been on vacation.

          I’m not saying Foles is god or the next marino but FFS,

          Also thrilled to know that all rookie QB’s have shown that they are stars by 8 games in. Well ok, go, extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence. By all means defend that statement without using the “take my word for it” argument.

    • A_T_G

      I disagree with every single thing you said in this post, which is truly remarkable. I think you are overestimating the hatred for Vick- many feel like I do: that he is a model of redemption. I think you are falsely accusing the organization of being swayed by this perceived hatred; if they were worried about the perception he would never have been offered a contract, let alone two. I think a guy who can win games, especially many games is, by definition, a capable starter. I think the competition is real, and I think Vick agrees. And not fun to watch, that describes the majority of Vick’s career with the Eagles.

    • joe

      You’re opinion is worthless because like all “Vick supporters” you have absolutely no reason to believe Vick will play any better other than hope. You hope he’ll play like he did in 6 games of 2010. The man has only played at an elite level for 6 games in his whole career.

      On the other hand, you’ve judged Foles’ ceiling after watching only 7 games. How did you do that? What were your determining factors in deciding that opinion of Foles? I await your response.

      • aub32

        So Vick supporters have no ground to stand upon despite having seen Vick win games and last over a decade in the NFL. Not to mention he could’ve started the season 5-1 if not for a bad D and won the division in 11. But you know exactly how high Foles can climb based on his ability to barely beat the worse secondary in the league last year

        • ACViking

          Or Vick could have started off 0-6 if:

          (i) the Cleveland LB doesn’t drop a sure INT in the EZ on the next to last play, (ii) an offensive interference penalty [questionable?] on WR Jacoby Jones of the Ravens negating what would have been the winning score for Baltimore, (iii) a missed but makeable FG by the G-men at the gun.

          The Eagles and Vick were lousy last year. Blame the O-line if you want. Blame the defense. Blame Vick’s remarkable propensity to get injured and miss 3-4 games every year.

          However you slice it, there’s a good argument to be made that Vick is not the Eagles’ future.

          • Cool Lester Smooth

            The real question is whether anyone can make a good argument that Vick -is- the Eagles’ future

          • aub32

            A new coach is turning the page, and if the new coach decides Vick is the best option in 2013, why would we want different. If he told you Vick was better, but I’m going to start Foles, that just means we are throwing an entire season away. The best guys should play. Vick has won this division with less talent on offense, and all you have to do is make the tournament to have a shot.

          • http://www.facebook.com/stephen.stempo Stephen Stempo

            I guess the issue becomes then that if vick plays very well you paint yourself into a corner, do you give ANOTHER multi year contract to a 34 year old QB, assuming vick has a great season (which is the only way he comes back) at which point you have to bid maybe against other teams who might be looking for the missing QB piece. Also at the end of the season vick might feel spurned that he had to restructure in the first place and bolt. There’s far far more risk in going with vick than one of the young guns.

            Also, Even if vick is slightly better or it’s even he loses. He really has to be worlds better at his age and stage of career to win this job. I think they brought Vick back on the lottery ticket assumption that he MIGHT light it up in camp and pre season and we could catch lightning in a bottle. Really Vick has to look Amazing to win the job, Foles and/or Barkely just have to look good. The only way Vik wins the job is if kelly thinks that this guy can lead them deep into the playoffs otherwise there’s no point.

          • aub32

            I think you’re complicating things too much. If Vick wins the division and looks good in this system, he should be brought back. The main reason for letting go of older players is due to the decline in their physical ability. Even though Vick may be declining, he’s still world’s better in terms of physical ability than anyone else on the roster. So that just leaves scheme fit. If he’s successful in year one of a new system, what makes you think he wouldn’t be better in year two. That’s my biggest problem with Foles supporters. They pick and choose how they want to manipulate the argument. If Foles is even decent in this system, they will say “it’s a new system and he looked pretty good. He’ll be better next year” That same argument could be used for any QB anywhere. Therefore, go with the better guy. Now the argument you have made is that Foles is a better QB. Based on what is what I ask. Foles won one game. He stares down receivers and reportedly still struggles with that. He saw things develop late and got lucky that three of his games were going against two of the worst 3 secondaries (Bucs and Skins twice). His statistics were ok, but so were Kolb’s, Feeley’s and Garcia’s. Reid had the backup QB game plan down to a science. None of those guys have gone on to do anything. Yet, the fans who witnessed back ups putting up decent numbers only to be sold at high prices and not pan out are being dooped. I am not saying Foles will be only mediocre. I am saying his poor to mediocre performance doesn’t warrant such high praise. I can always fall back on what I’ve seen Vick do, even in a scheme that didn’t always play to his strengths. He beat good teams. Foles beat the worst secondary in the league…Barely!!

      • Phils Goodman

        You’re opinion is worthless

        Way to make an introduction, Joe.

  • Phils Goodman

    I remember reading a coach-ism somewhere in a Chris Brown article that when you switch schemes, everyone becomes a freshman again. I think the learning curve is a big factor right now (probabl in Foles’ favor, with his spread experience), but as both QBs get more time in the play book and more reps on the field, that should start to even out. I think Vick’s talent ought to let him eventually pull away.

  • T_S_O_P

    Tommy, on Domo’s point about cost, I think regardless of his success in the event that he starts, Chip and the Eagles could still trade/release Vick next year. Conventional wisdom may not agree, but that is the way I see it.

    • TommyLawlor

      Vick has a 1-yr deal. He’s a UFA at the end of 2013.

  • D3FB

    I think the best thing Foles could do in the next week is get on a plane and go back to Zona. Hang out with his old college buddies. Spend time working out with them. Rich Rod runs the hell out of the ball in a fairly similar way to what Kelly did at Oregon. Spending time with the backs and QBs down there would be one of the best ways for Foles to pick up some of the nuances of the zone read. Yes it may not be a huge part of the playbook but if Foles can improve on one of his percieved weaknesses then it only gives him another tool going forward. Foles doesn’t have the speed to burn defenses with the zone read but if he can pick up some of the smaller aspects of reading the D and working on the exchange with the RB it would be huge for him going into camp.

  • D-von

    To me the answer is pretty simple:
    1.) I know what Vick is: turnover and injury prone (and that probably won’t change with a new scheme)
    2.) Foles played pretty well under the circumstances he was put into; I want to see more of what he can do.
    3) Barkley is a complete unknown to me, but he seems to have all the answers when talking to the media.

  • Dave

    Athletic ability and body measurements (height, weight, speed, strength, etc.) are easily observed and constantly scrutinized. Intelligence, on the other hand, is often a taboo subject. Teams keep Wonderlic and other aptitude test scores a secret. Too often it seems that an assumption is made that if a player has great athleticism and is highly motivated, they can overcome their intellectual limitations. In the real world, most of us know this is not true.

    I have a buddy who really flaked out in high school and made lots of bad decisions in his life. Approaching his mid 20’s, he told me he was going to go to community college and then college to obtain a 5-year pharmacy degree. His logic was the common Ben Franklin quote ”you can put anything you set your mind to”. I disagreed with him and told him that a pharmacy degree was a tough degree to obtain and takes more than hard work. He would have to be able learn and comprehend biological, physical, and chemical sciences. I told him there is a reason that only the best and brightest get accepted into this specialty degree program.

    I think out of all the positions on a football team, most can be taught and learned. The quarterback position is different. Tommy brought up Steve Young and indicated he did not become a star until age 31. One thing that is evident with Steve Young is that he is an intelligent person. You don’t go back to school to get you Juris Doctor after your playing career ends unless you have a high intelligence.

    Listen, I’m not bashing Vick, I commend him for turning his life around. But when you look at what he’s good at (athletic ability) and what he has trouble with (decision making), it tends to indicate he does not have high intelligence. Before anyone bashes me for calling Vick dumb, I am absolutely not saying that. I just think that being average or below average in intelligence is a bigger handicap of a quarterback than physical limitations. Heck, there is a reason journalists are so high on Matt Barkley in a few years to take over at QB.

  • Flyin

    The Tebow circus is moving to New England.

    • goeagles55

      That means Tebow will be at the NovaCare complex for a few practices. I can’t wait until Trash Can shows him up.

    • Mac

      I would be ok with Kafka as our #3.

  • Duracell

    I’m almost rooting for Barkley to win the job just because I can’t stand either the Foles camp or the Vick camp. (Honestly I just want whichever quarterback gives the Eagles the best chance to win, and I trust Chip Kelly and I trust that whoever does come out on top will be a good option.)

    I’m tired of the Vick camp when people claim that he has the mobility and athleticism, etc. Obviously that’s a bonus, but for him to be effective in Chip’s system he will need to make quick, smart decisions. He has shown he can do that in spurts, but it’s also not something he’s done consistently.

    I’m tired of the Foles camp for saying things like Foles did as well as Vick last year despite all the other injuries. While it is true, it’s also true that whenever Andy lacked the ‘talent’ at the QB position, he really simplified things for the offense. Case in point, Jeff Garcia vs. McNabb. That said, Foles was a rookie and he did show a lot of promising things last year.

    People that discount one guy or the other are wrong. Whoever wins the job will have beat out other viable NFL quarterbacks to win the job and will have won the trust of Chip Kelly. I’m on board with whoever that is. Part of me leans slightly toward Foles, due to youth/contract and overall better short passing game. Another part of me leans toward Vick because I think the offense has higher upside with him at the helm (coupled with higher downside as well). But ultimately I’m going to fully support whoever wins the job, and I hope most other fans are on board with that.

    • Iskar36

      Get out of here with your reasoned, logical and unbiased statements. There’s no place for that in a heated discussion!

  • ojdiddoit

    I think I heard Chip Kelly tell anyone and everyone who will listen..there is no depth chart,number of reps mean zilch,first team,second team third team,who cares..no pads means ive got 3 viable canidates to run whatever version of the read option/west coast offense I decide..we will decide when we decide

    • TommyLawlor

      No decision has been made or is close to being made. That doesn’t mean there isn’t a bit of a pecking order based on what we’ve seen.

  • ACViking

    Re: Mike Vick on Igglesblitz.com

    Seems to me that none of T-Law’s posts are more divisive than those concerning Mike Vick.

    That’s as true now, with Vick having a new coach and learning entirely new system, as it was when MV was playing for Reid who pick MV over Kolb and had the comfort of being in a system he knew.

    Clearly, a sensitive topic for the fan base.

    But T-Law does us all a great service teeing up the topic . . . .

    THANK YOU, T-Law!

    • GEagle

      To try and maintain my sanity, Im in denial about Vick possibly being our QB

      • Neil

        With complete frankness, why do you do this to yourself? Why not just stop, breathe and chill out, deciding not to let a football team affect your mental state so drastically?

        • GEagle

          Its a Joke….DEEP BREATHE!!!
          Geeez

  • Pingback: Random notes around the NFC East: Barry Cofiled & undersized NTs, Nicks/Cruz, possible Cowboys FA targets, and Lane Johnson’s college QB numbers – Blogging the bEast

  • Pingback: The Linc – Redskins had an easy road to the playoffs in 2012 | Sports Feedr