Sunday, October 6, 2013
Kelly: QB might change, but offense doesn't
By Phil Sheridan
EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. -- Chip Kelly says the Philadelphia Eagles' offense is the same whether Michael Vick or Nick Foles is playing quarterback.
Your eyes might say otherwise. Heck, the people lined up across from the Eagles say otherwise.
“We were well conditioned coming into this game,” New York Giants cornerback Prince Amukamara said. “But when Mike Vick got out, their whole game plan changed just because there aren’t two runners in the backfield. Foles does more passing.”
Vick ran the ball seven times in just under a half before pulling his left hamstring. He picked up 79 yards.
“A couple of those long runs Mike had were actually designed sweep plays,” Kelly said. “So he wasn’t running a lot of read-option. We didn’t change our game plan with Nick.”
Foles did run by design. Just once. On second-and-goal from the New York 8-yard line, Foles sprinted around left end. He picked up three yards.
“There’s obviously a difference between Mike Vick and Nick Foles, for sure, from an athletic standpoint,” running back LeSean McCoy said. “But Nick can run this offense, also.”
Foles ran a very efficient two-minute drill after replacing Vick late in the second quarter. That resulted in a field goal at the end of the half. The third quarter was a little more difficult. With Vick out of the game, the Giants were able to focus more on McCoy. He had minus-9 rushing yards on the Eagles’ first possession of the half.
“It’s Michael Vick,” McCoy said. “He can take off at any given time. There’s definitely a matchup difference when you compare to Michael Vick. People say we have to stop Vick. That’s something he’s had to deal with since he’s been in the NFL.”
In the fourth quarter, which decided the game, Foles was good enough. The Eagles' defense produced three interceptions, giving Foles the ball at the New York 25, 38 and 49 yard lines.
After the first, Foles struck quickly with a perfect 25-yard touchdown throw to tight end Brent Celek. After the second, Foles hit DeSean Jackson for 28 yards, then threw a perfect ball to Jackson for a 5-yard TD.
“Foles just came in and did a good job,” Jackson said. “He’s been in this position before. He knows what to do and he knows what to expect.”
The question becomes whether preparation changes for next Sunday’s game in Tampa. Vick’s status might not be clear early in the week. He will have an MRI Monday. Kelly said it doesn’t matter which quarterback is behind center.
“Our game plan doesn’t drastically change,” Kelly said.