Could Nick Foles beat out Michael Vick as Eagles quarterback?
Most everyone simply assumed that Michael Vick would be the Eagles’ starting quarterback this season. After all, he seems best suited for Coach Chip Kelly’s read-option spread offense. Plus Vick is making around $10 million this year. However, Kelly has always said the best QB would play and apparently that’s second-year guy Nick Foles so far with the Eagles set to open camp next week.
One flaw in assuming Vick would win the job is that Vick hasn’t been very good for two seasons. He has more turnovers (33) than touchdowns (30). The Eagles’ offensive line problems are a huge reason for Vick’s struggles, but that doesn’t totally take him off the hook for his mistakes. Even Kelly’s reliance on a running quarterback is overstated. He won’t have the same system in the NFL that he ran at Oregon, and last year his starting quarterback Marcus Mariota ran just 107 times in 13 games.
Foles played well enough at times last year to at least have some intrigue. A 381-yard performance with two touchdowns and no interceptions did come against a bad Buccaneers secondary. Foles also threw for 345 yards in the last of his seven games last year, against Dallas. He wasn’t great as a rookie, but certainly good enough to get a legitimate chance to compete for a starting job.
Kelly has been very clear about what he values in a quarterback. Arguably the two most important traits are accuracy and decision making. Foles is considered more accurate than Vick, and is also considered better at getting the ball out quick.
Eagles receiver DeSean Jackson said last month that he thinks the team’s quarterback competition is “kind of even.” But Jackson said today that if he has to predict, he thinks Vick will beat out Foles and be Philadelphia’s Week 1 starter.
“In my opinion, honestly, I don’t want to be put on the spot,” Jackson said. “But Michael Vick’s got a lot of confidence in himself. He’s been there going on 12 years in the NFL, and I think he’ll get the job.”
The Eagles open Week 1 at Washington, with Philly opening as a 4.5-point WagerWeb underdog.