Wednesday, October 9, 2013
QB Watch: Eagles' Michael Vick
By Phil Sheridan
A weekly analysis of the Eagles' quarterback play:
Rewind: Michael Vick was having a better day running the ball (seven carries, 79 yards) than throwing it (6-of-14, 105 yards) against the Giants. So it's probably fitting that he injured his hamstring while running out of bounds. Nick Foles came off the bench and managed a two-minute drill for a field goal late in the first half. Foles (16-of-25, 197 yards) threw two fourth-quarter touchdowns to secure the win. Neither quarterback turned the ball over.
Fast-forward: The winless Tampa Bay Buccaneers have a respectable defense, certainly better than the Eagles faced at New York. Although coach Chip Kelly hasn't declared Vick out, it is expected that Foles will start in the one stadium where he won a game in six starts last year. Foles thrives on getting the ball out quickly and accurately, while not bringing the same mobility or arm strength that distinguish Vick.
Uncertainty principle: Kelly and offensive coordinator Pat Shurmur swear the Eagles run the same offense with both quarterbacks. It sure looks different when Foles is in there, however. The uncertainty this week should have more impact on the Bucs than the Eagles. They have to prepare for two entirely different styles, while the Eagles will know which chapters in Kelly's playbook will be featured.
Prediction: Expect Foles to start and Matt Barkley to back him up. Foles can run the offense efficiently, and he moves well enough in the pocket to avoid the rush and throw from different platforms. For the first time this season, the Eagles' offense doesn't figure to be in a shootout, and Foles is capable of putting up more points than Mike Glennon.