PHILADELPHIA -- Whether it was a sign of trouble to come or nothing much at all depends largely on how Nick Foles reacts to his performance in Friday night’s preseason opener in Chicago.
Foles was on the field for three Eagles offensive drives. A three-and-out was the best of his efforts. The other two drives ended with Foles throwing interceptions.
Of course, that is as many interceptions as he threw all of last season, in over 300 pass attempts. That is going to be brought up every time Foles has a rough game, which is part of the challenge as Foles tries to live up to his 2013 standards.
“I think I just made a couple bad throws,” Foles told reporters after the game, according to csnphilly.com. “It’s as simple as that. Everybody’s going to look into it and try to think all these different things, but me personally -- it’s a sick feeling in your stomach, but at the same time, I know that I can correct those. I’m going to go back to work and get better because of it.”
Foles did not have a great 2013 preseason. He lost the quarterback competition with Michael Vick outright. However, after replacing injured Vick in the regular season, Foles threw 27 touchdown passes and two interceptions. His passer rating was a league-best 119.2.
It was never realistic to expect that kind of near perfection from Foles over the long term. But one of the things that could undermine the Eagles in coach Chip Kelly’s second season is a major regression from the quarterback.
“We turned the ball over too many times on the offensive side of the football if you're going to win football games,” Kelly told reporters after the game, according to the Eagles' website. “That part of the game doesn't change. I think they're aware that if you play the turnover game in this league and if you're on the negative side, you come out on the negative side in the game. We've got to be smarter with the football."
That starts with Foles. Kelly said he wasn’t overly concerned after one poor quarter of preseason football.
“It's one preseason game,” Kelly told reporters. “He got X amount of snaps. We'll make corrections and go from there.”
The other three quarterbacks did better. Mark Sanchez completed 7 of 10 passes for 79 yards. Matt Barkley was inconsistent, completing 7 of 16 for 73 yards with one touchdown and an interception. G.J. Kinne finished up, going 8-for-10 for 88 yards.
“I thought the other quarterbacks really did a good job,” Foles told reporters.