Twitter Mailbag: On Vick, Foles And the Secondary

Every Thursday we select a few of your Twitter questions and provide the long-form answers they deserve. For a chance to have your question published on Birds 24/7, send it to @Tim_McManus.

From @ZainSaleh24: how do you feel the eagles did in the draft? Any picks you would change?

Overall, feel pretty good about it. So much rests on that Lane Johnson pick. The words “raw” and “upside” were some of the first out of Chip Kelly‘s mouth when officially announcing the selection. You would prefer a more sure-fire prospect at No. 4. But there were no players on the board that fit that description. Ziggy Ansah has only been playing football since 2010. Star Lotulelei had the heart-condition scare. Tavon Austin is only 5-8, etc. Everyone had some kind of question mark attached.

I like Zach Ertz‘s chances of thriving in this system.  He is the type of chess piece that Kelly can use to create all sorts of matchup problems.

Then there is Matt Barkley. Fourth-round picks can definitely help your team. Brandon Boykin and Alex Henery were both recently found in Round 4. Jason Avant and Todd Herremans before them. Howie Roseman used a fourth-rounder to net DeMeco Ryans. Another was sent in a package to Buffalo for Jason Peters. It’s not like they can be treated as throw-a-ways. That said, there is no guarantee that you will land an impact player. Think Trey Darilek or Jamaal Green. Your odds decrease the further you get into the draft.

Could be that Barkley never pans out. There is also chance, however remote, that he can be a franchise-changer. Even if it’s a longshot, it’s worth the bet that late in the draft.

From @DJ_Hardy009:  your gut feeling, week 1 the eagles starting qb will be _____________.

Michael Vick.

Talk to some of the people around the signal-caller, and you’ll walk away with the impression that the 32-year-old is dialed in. He is aware that the end is near, and is motivated by the challenges that both Kelly and Father Time are presenting to him. The best Michael Vick is the one who needs to prove himself. The early word is that he looks very good on the practice field.

Kelly may not need his quarterback to be mobile, but he sure would prefer it. All things considered I think Vick does enough to win the starting job. Whether he can hold onto it is an entirely different conversation.

From @TheFortycent: no trade of Foles yet, any chance they’re holding him as trade bait during the season when a starter gets hurt to up his value?

No, if he was going to be traded I think it would have been done by now. Kelly has publicly stated that he likes Nick Foles and wants a chance to work with him. I was told Howie Roseman personally called Foles amid all the trade speculation to express that the team wanted to keep him. From what I gather the Eagles were approached by at least one team regarding a potential trade, and weren’t all that interested in engaging in talks.

Vick is only a short-term option and Barkley hasn’t played a snap. I believe Kelly when he says that he wants to see what he has in Foles.

From @PerfectionistPA: who will start in the secondary?

Good question. Right now I would pencil in the free-agent acquisitions as the starters: Kenny Phillips and Patrick Chung at safety, Bradley Fletcher and Cary Williams at corner. I am anxious to get a look at Phillips in action to see if he is still dealing with knee issues. The fact that the Eagles got him for so cheap raises some concerns.

I’m curious to see if fifth-round draft choice Earl Wolff can get in the mix for playing time. Also, it’s worth noting that seventh-rounder Jordan Poyer played inside a bunch at Oregon State. Could he put the heat on Boykin?

“I think he had six picks this year as a nickel,” said Kelly. “He has a lot of experience playing inside and covering slot receivers. He’s a tough, physical, hard-nosed player.”

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  • mgimbel

    Sheil… Poyer played at Oregon St. not NC State.

  • PaoliBulldog

    Unfortunately we heard that Vick had worked very hard during the post-2011 offseason, studying tape and so forth. And we all know the unhappy result of THAT.

    Vick may be mobile, but he is inaccurate and slow to read coverages. I think those are deal breakers.

    • morgan c

      FACT. We heard this the past two years. What, again, is the definition of true insanity? I know Kelly’s system is different and all, but I just don’t see how this guy can be our starting QB after the past two years. He turns the ball over, and can’t read a defense. He has had years to do this, and he proved, beyond a shadow of a doubt last year, that he cannot. Kelly said sacks and TOs are the QB’s fault. I can’t wait for him to pull Vick in week 4.

    • http://twitter.com/Lez215 Dutch

      in 2011 Andy and Marty devised a horrible scheme that was definitely not suited to Vick’s talent. Long heaves 40 times a game to DJax with 2 deep safeties just wasn’t forward thinking. However, a run heavy attack featuring Shady proved to be a success as Shady had his best production as a professional. He benefited from DJax stretching the defenses.

      There was no consistent production from the Slot, and Tight End.

      • Wayne Charles

        You seem to be the only guy that took a realistic view of how Vick was utilized. Dropping him back 40 times a game ( with a weak OL) and w/ Shadey getting the ball less than 20 times was the dumbest game plan you could ever have.

        Vick has deficiencies , no doubt, but when you are clueless to his skill set like Reid was your going to create the disaster that was last season.

        Im not sold on Chip but Reid needed to go two years ago. He had to be distracted by his family life. His boys where literally killing themselves but he refused to take time off. Thats a sign of a guy who needs help well beyond football. Good luck in KC but I’m sooooo glad he’s out of Philly.

  • B-West

    It would seem that Foles (or Barkley for that matter) would have to beat out Vick, while Vick needs only to be the equal of Foles. If they are both executing their throws with equal efficiency, Vick would get the nod by default because of what his legs bring to the table.

    • GEagle

      I actually think its the opposite. Vick needs to prove that he is significantly better than the young kids to warrant, taking a year away from valuable playing experience crucial to their development. let’s pretend that Matt or Foles are definitely franchise QBs…no matter how good they are, they will still need 2 years of NFL experience at the very least before they are ever ready to seriously compete for a title…there also happens to be a very interesting crop of QBs in the next draft. if Vick isn’t head and shoulder better than the young gunners, then you should be using this year, to try and find out if you have a franchise QB on this roster, so you can know if you should invest a first round pick in a QB next year, or if you should set our sites on Clowney, Mathews, or Austin Seriafan….
      …..There is no way you can make An accurate assessment of Foles, playing with a practice squad Caliber line, during 6 games of his rookie campaign. Now if you play Foles in year two behind this healthy Oline, and all these weapons surrounding him, you will ATleast be able to make an accurate assessment about whether or not he is the longterm answer for your franchise……Defenses will know longer know every play we are running, we have all the ingredients of a high powered offense, in place, surrounding the QB..because Foles got 6years experience last year, I think if he is a franchise guy, He should be able to show it THIS YEAR, with these weapons.. if there is any doubt at the end of this year if he is the franchise guy or not, THEN HE ISN’T a franchise guy. we have the ingredients in place to be able to find out…since we only won 4 games last year, why wouldn’t we invest this year finding out? If Vick starts and plays 16games hahahahahahaha I can’t believe I just said that, lol, ok let’s pretend he plays 16 games, we won’t have a Super Bowl to show for it, and we still won’t know if One of our young kids is a franchise guy, and Vick will be 34years old, and there will be so many attractive QBs in the draft, that we won’t have a choice but to draft a QB in round 1
      coming off a 4-12 year, I just think the most pressure is on the 33rd year old, fighting for his NFL life….I’m an Eagles fan, the names on the back of the jersey come second. I want what’s best for this franchise…and Vick would have to be significantly better than the young bucks, to say that Mike Vick is what’s best for this franchise….

      • B-West

        Well, I can’t believe I’m saying this, but I totally agree with your point. I love the excitement around Chip, but I think the roster is still a couple years away from true contention. Figure out the future at QB during this rebuild as well.

        Two thoughts to throw back at you. I do buy the idea, at least a little bit, that Chip Kelly would like to see what he could do with Vick. Vick’s running ability equals versatility and offensive options, which we know our boy loves.

        Second, early reports are that there are enough reps in a Chip Kelly practice for the backup QBs to get some work. Granted, nothing is a substitute for NFL game day action, but at least those guys would still be getting work if Vick becomes the starter.

        • GEagle

          I can’t disagree. Welcome to the dark side. I knew you would come around lol

          • B-West

            Nooooo!!!!! Haha

      • eaglepete

        Great point, I would hope CK thinks this way but a coach only has so many yrs to show progress

  • nicksaenz1

    vick has looked good on the practice field since getting out of jail. even in atlanta he looked good on the practice field. sadly, aside from the 2010 abberation, he’s been average at best in total. its about time we stop talking about vick’s practicing being so awesome. his on field play isnt.

  • eaglepete

    3 coaches down, 1 to go. They all think they can make Vick work. What am I thinking the 4th coach is the charm right

    • cliff henny

      kelly isnt linked to vick like reid. by last yr, even though vick was the human turnover machine in the first 2 games, reid had made his bed by then. dont think anyone would hold playing vick against kelly. i’d assume like i have since day he was hired, qb is in ’14 draft. now, that guy (crossedfingers its bridgewater-if that bowl game is any indication- or marioti) he’ll be forever linked too.

  • dislikedisqus

    I don’t think how Vick appears in April or May is a good predictor of how productive he will be in the regular season. Vick has gotten significantly injured each of the last two years.I don’t see how he can be counted on for a full season. I think it’s time to move on.

    • GEAgle

      I could see Vick’s decisions driving Chip insane

  • http://twitter.com/Lez215 Dutch

    Kelly brings a breath of fresh air and logic that was absent under the stubbornness of Andy Reid. Andy long abandoned a sustained approach to moving the ball down the field and preferred the 30 and 40 yard bombs.

    You could always count on one of the opening plays to be the Eagles launching a heave to DeSean, instead of applying a simple sustained attack utilizing the multiple weapons on offense to exploit the advantage of DeSean blowing the top off defenses featuring 2 deep safeties.

    It’s going to be a welcomed sight watching a 6’6 250lb Tight Ends cruise between the hash marks or Shady, 7 to 10 yds down field exploiting Line Backers and Defensive Backs or swing passes to the flats and Bubble screens with one side of the field abandoned.

    Pick your poison, fill the box to protect against Vick, Shady and Brown, and get pounded by screens and quick curls and pitch outs, or protect against the curls and skinny post and watch Peters and the crew barrel down field causing mayhem with Shady or Brown tucked behind them exploiting the creases through a soft middle.

    This will be a so much better than waiting on DJax, or Maclin to come open 30 yds down field and heaving 40 throws a game.

  • Jonathan R. Henry

    I don’t know why I hear so many complaints about Vick being a favorite to win the starting job. It’s a one-year deal, and we’re not passing up on any franchise QBs this year. I think Barkley may be better than Foles, but if I had someone with Vick’s skill set, I’d want to give him another shot, especially given the fact that we’re actually going to use our run game this year.

  • jaran riley

    Poyer will be taking Boykins starting job.

  • http://www.facebook.com/ldawg.evony Ldawg Evony

    Vick was lazy in Atlanta. He admitted the fact.. Once he was out of prison and Andy got him, Vick was motivated and worked hard to gain that starting job. Once he got it, he got lazy again. So here we go again. Vick is motivated to win the starting job with Chip and if he gets it, it’s a sure fire bet that he will get lazy again.