Geoff Mosher of CSNPhilly.com believes that second-year quarterback Nick Foles has an edge over Michael Vick for the Eagles starting quarterback job heading into camp.
I really do. Months ago, I felt Vick had the best chance to start. The organization’s willingness to bring him back under a restructured contract despite a turbulent past two seasons, coupled with Chip Kelly’s system at Oregon that favored mobile quarterbacks, seemingly made Vick ripe for the job. I thought he’d be a “bridge quarterback” for year one until Kelly could bring his own guy. So much has changed since then.
The drafting of Matt Barkley justified Kelly’s insistence that his offense in the NFL didn’t require a mobile quarterback to lead it. The 50-50 splitting of reps at the spring camps only further fostered the idea that Kelly will build his offense around the quarterback with the best overall skill set, not the one who runs the fastest 40.
Now, it’s obvious to me that Vick actually has the toughest road to the starting job, more than Foles or Barkley. At 33, which he turned last month, he’s far and away the oldest quarterback on the roster. At more than $7 million this year, he’s also far and away the most expensive. New coaches tend to build their programs around young franchise signal callers, not aging ones whose best days are well behind them.
It also helps that Foles and Barkley are much more salary-cap friendly than Vick. Even if it’s a tie between Vick and Foles or Vick and Barkley as training camp progresses this summer, what impetus would Kelly have to stick with Vick?
It’ll be interesting to see if Barkley can elbow his way into the competition. Logic dictates that if Barkley is just a hair behind Vick and Foles, the coaches will go with him and take their lumps for a few games if they believe he has the most upside, much like the Seahawks did last season with Russell Wilson and the Niners did with Colin Kaepernick.
While I believe the race for the Eagles starting job is for the taking, I believe Vick has the edge because of his skill set.