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Tuesday, July 23, 2013
Matt Barkley: Don't count me out news services

Michael Vick and Nick Foles are battling for the Philadelphia Eagles' starting quarterback job, but rookie Matt Barkley also has a chance to be the No. 1 quarterback and he's refusing to be counted out.

On Monday, Barkley, selected by Philadelphia in the fourth round of April's draft, made sure right away that he doesn't get overlooked in the competition.

"I couldn't care less about what people are talking about," Barkley said. "I don't listen to that. I'm part of that race, whether people are saying that or not. There is an open competition. I absolutely feel like I've got to be a part of it. I've got to challenge myself, just like any other guy on the team."

Eagles coach Chip Kelly said Tuesday Vick and Foles would split the reps at the beginning of training camp and that he'd have a starter named by the time he's game-planning for Philadelphia's Week 1 game against the Washington Redskins.

I'm part of that race, whether people are saying that or not. There is an open competition. I absolutely feel like I've got to be a part of it.

-- Matt Barkley

Vick, who spoke to reporters Tuesday, said he has gained four pounds of "all muscle" during the offseason. He also said that if he doesn't emerge from training camp with the starting job he'd still support the the team. 

"I would continue to support this team. I'm here for one reason. To help this team win football games. By any means necessary. If I have to watch film with all of the quarterbacks ... or if I have to coach the quarterbacks one day, I can do that," he told reporters, according to the Philadelphia Daily News.

Foles, meanwhile, said he doesn't believe any of the quarterbacks have an edge on the competition entering training camp.

"I feel like we're still competing and there is no lead," Foles said Monday. "There's never a lead. That was the spring. That was an opportunity for the team to get better. And I feel like I had a solid spring. There's a lot of stuff I had to correct from the spring. I look at it like a work in progress. This camp is another opportunity to get better and improve on the things I didn't think I did well in the last camp and get even better at the things I thought I did do well.

"There is no lead. Every day, one guy is going to have a good day and one guy is going to have a mediocre day."

Foles started six games last year after Vick was injured, going 1-5 on a team that finished 4-12. He completed 60.8 percent of his passes for 1,699 yards, six touchdowns and five interceptions.

"I'm not here to be a backup. I'm here to be the guy," Foles said. "I don't think we play this game to sit on the bench. We play it to play, and I'm here to play."

Who will be the starter when the Eagles open the season at Washington on Sept. 9 has been the biggest question since Kelly arrived in Philadelphia. Kelly is a long way from making that decision.

Vick has missed 11 games because of injuries over the last three seasons. He finished last year with 2,362 yards passing, 12 touchdowns and 10 interceptions, and also lost five fumbles.

"I'm confident in myself and I'm very confident. That's the only reason why I'm standing here," Vick said Tuesday. "I believe in me. I know what I can do. I know I've got a lot of years left to play this game."

Information from The Associated Press was used in this report.