Kelly: Sanchez Isn’t Ahead Of Barkley

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Photo by: Jeff Fusco

This probably isn’t where Matt Barkley thought he’d be going into his second season in the NFL.

A fourth-round pick in 2013, he entered the league in what seemed like an attractive position. Michael Vick was on a one-year deal, and Nick Foles was an unproven commodity with limited experience.




During the regular season, of course, Foles seized the opportunity. And in limited action as a backup, Barkley threw four interceptions on 49 attempts, compiling a passer rating of 44.6.

"If people know me and they know who I am, not just what they saw this season, they know what I’m capable of and that I can throw the ball downfield," Barkley said. "I can put the ball where I want it and make plays, win games and what-not. So I’m not worried about last year."

But Year 2 is not off to such a promising start as the Eagles went out and signed Mark Sanchez. During the practices open to the media, Sanchez has taken all the second-team reps ahead of Barkley.

Asked about that decision, Chip Kelly said: "There is no decision. There's no decision. We're just getting reps. So there's not a decision of who's who."

But isn't Barkley getting fewer reps?

"It's not less - we chart it every day," Kelly said. "Our ones and twos and threes are getting the same amount of reps. G.J. [Kinne] sometimes takes the one reps when it comes back. If anybody is trying to make anything of who is playing what or how many reps, all we are trying to do is see if we can get three reps a minute as fast as we can go, get it on tape and coach off of that.

"So there's nothing to read into who is where, what, whatever, because we're not playing a game until September. We are just trying to get as many plays as we can possibly get. So I would not read anything into who is where or what."

It's true that the coaches mix things up all the time. But we saw a quarterback competition last year, and Foles and Vick alternated first-team reps - either by day or by drills. The truth is, if the Eagles were confident in Barkley being their backup, they wouldn't have gone out and signed Sanchez in the first place.

Could Barkley still end up winning the backup job? Sure. But at this point, Sanchez is clearly the favorite.

Asked if he's content with the number of reps he's currently getting, Barkley said: "I think every quarterback would take every rep in practice if they could. Even in college, that was my M.O. But that’s not my say in this organization. Mine is to complete balls and make the right reads and what-not. So that’s what I’ll be doing."

There's also the injury factor. Sanchez is working through a shoulder ailment, but has not missed any time. Barkley had a shoulder injury coming out of the draft, but says his arm feels stronger in Year 2.

"It bothered me early into the season," he said. "It was bearable, so I said that it was fine. It wasn’t falling off or anything, but it definitely wasn’t the way it should have been. It wasn’t normal, so it took some time just to get used to throwing the way it hurt last year. But it’s all healed up. I’m surprised it took that long to heal, but it feels good now, which is a good thing."

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  • JosephR2225

    The moral of the story is: Please, please stay healthy, Nick.

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  • Sconces

    I feel like Barkley’s making excuses

    • JofreyRice

      Yo, I thought he was touted as a great “locker room leader”? So far he’s been whiny, sulky and generally entitled.

      • OldDocRoss

        Yeah, I’m trying to give him the benefit of the doubt and that maybe some of what he says just reads badly, but “entitled” seems to sum him up all too well.

        • anon

          Can’t hate the pick too bad – Kelly was a first year coach and wanted something he was familiar with. Can’t believe he’s so bad in a system that in Vick looked good in.

      • dnabrice

        The kid said his arm didn’t feel right last year. Kelly himself has said that it got better and stronger over the course of the year. Yeah, he hasn’t played like a 1st Round pick, but he wasn’t……Where have you read him being whiny/sulky/entitled???

        • JofreyRice

          basically any time they put a mic in his face, he’s crying about being a third stringer, and how he’s a competitor. I say, take that competitive streak to the practice squad and work on that piece of spaghetti hanging off your shoulder.

          • cliff henny

            like when angry JR shows up

          • http://www.idonthaveawebsite.com theedevilsadvocate

            i agree for sure.

      • Ian Farley

        i dont see it as whiny, i think he is just competitive. wants his opportunities to show he is capable. the reason he was considered a 1st rounder before the shoulder. i still think he has enough ability to be a far better backup than Sanchez.

        Barkley gets a tough break considering he came in earlier than he should have as a rookie out of necessity. he was not prepared and clearly not healthy. I still see a guy with potential to be a reliable backup in this league given the time and health to develop.

        • JofreyRice

          eh, I’m not big into that line of thinking “he was a first rounder”. Based on what, throwing slants to Robert Woods and Marquise Lee? I’m on record here, somewhere, saying I wouldn’t take him earlier than the 4th, way before the draft. He’s just never seemed to have more potential than just as a backup, to me, and now maybe that was an overestimate.

          I know some people in the media were capping his head up, but I just never saw the guy as good.

    • Yes_General

      Is it too soon to call this 4th RD pick a bust?

      • Sconces

        4th round picks don’t bust though

        • OldDocRoss

          Casey Matthews is doing his best to disprove that statement each and every year.

          • Tikkit

            Can’t bust if you’re already there. The technical term is “playing to your ability”.

          • OldDocRoss

            Ha. If ever a man was defined by his spider graph, it were Casey.

          • Eagles1018

            Casey Matthews reference…told myself every time I see his name I’d stab myself with the tip of my ball point pen in the genitals. That’s how much I want him gone. Thanks

          • Andy124

            Casey Matthews

          • OldDocRoss

            Two questions:

            1. Surname of Eagles TE James, signed last year from the Houston Texans?
            2. Surname of Jordan, WR drafted in 2nd round by the Eagles in 2014?

            Answers?

          • Tikkit

            On a Dallas board you would certainly be banned for being “all smart and stuff”. Subtle.

          • Andy124

            I’m going to go with Casey Matthews.

          • OldDocRoss

            This sentence was last uttered by one A. Reid, now of Kansas, on April 30th 2011.

            It did not end well.

          • Tikkit

            Doesn’t have the same effect as saying Murderleg 3 times in a row, does it?

          • Andy124

            Casey Matthews.

          • Andy124

            Casey Matthews!

      • cliff henny

        least you waited a year, some were before 5th round of ’13s draft.

  • JofreyRice

    “Barkley had a shoulder injury coming out of the draft, but says his arm feels stronger in Year 2.”

    “I can throw the ball downfield” Barkley said.

    This article would not be complete without the obligatory “his arm is much stronger this year” line. Guy sucks. Noodle arm. They know it, I just don’t know why they thought Rex Grossman in a headband was a much better option.

    • cliff henny

      Gawd I hate that 16 yr old girl softball headband! is he still wearing that?

      • Tikkit

        I count him among the people that I’d punch on site. Co-Number 1 on my list is Counting Crows and Nickleback. Everyone in the band gets lumped up.

        • cliff henny

          thank you. really hope he doesn’t see extended time, that would seriously test my fandom.

        • OldDocRoss

          I just assumed Shockey or Michael Irvin would still be #1 on everyone’s list. Has that much time really passed?

        • Reasonableeaglefan

          Yeah Barkley sucks (quickly hides Counting Crows collection)

        • All Things Bad@ss

          Hey now … the Counting Crow dudes are friends of mine. Great guys, truly. But go ahead and smack up Nickelback all you want!

        • EagleDuck

          I would ‘like’ this comment many times if not for the Counting Crows disrespect… Could we switch in the Spin Doctors instead???

      • JofreyRice

        I’ve seen some reports that he’s now wearing a scrunchy.

        • cliff henny

          Ha! when charting plays, is he using a big spiraling pen?

          • JofreyRice

            he writes in bubble letters.

          • cliff henny

            dots his “I’s” with hearts

        • EaglefaninAZ

          This winter, he’ll be bringing back the mid 80’s leg warmers in a big way. I gotta find my skinny ties.

        • cliff henny

          is his new nickname ‘scrunchez’

  • cliff henny
  • Petition Man

    Who wanted this petition? Sign to get Tim and Sheil to cal Cary Williams “sconces” from now on

    .https://www.change.org/petitions/tim-mcmanus-and-sheil-kapadia-call-cary-williams-sconces-in-every-article

  • Scott J

    What’s a what-not?

    • Reasonableeaglefan

      It’s my least favorite conversation crutch. Just ahead of people who add, “true story,” to the end of a (usually pointless) sentence.

      • Scott J

        Or, one of my favorites, “I’m not gonna lie…”

      • mufassa

        Or, “it is what it is”…

        • ICDogg

          Yeah, I’m not fond of that one. The old version of that was “It’s just one of those things”…

  • myeaglescantwin

    This guy was the number one recruited QB coming out of high school. He put together a really good college career. He would have been a first rounder in 2012.

    It all sounds good in retrospect, but there’s something to be said about a QB that has a NFL OL and NFL WR’s to dish the ball off to.
    Look at Matt Lienart, Tim Tebow, Vince Young, Chris Weinkie, Ken Dorsy, ect ect.

    Sanchez was a prospect who’s own coach said he was not ready for the NFL. He has the arm, it’s just what’s between his shoulders that needed work. Pete Carrol called him out, and he was right. Rex never gave him a good QB coach or mentor, therefor he never progressed. With Chip’s staff, there’s a chance his career can get back on track.

    Conversely the only thing that Barkley had going for him was his football IQ and anticipation. Maybe he was just gunshy in 2013, but i did not see any of that shine in his play.
    He lacked the vision to see the underneath zones that killed him time and time again.
    hopefully in 2014 he can focus on his play rather than tempo and the playbook.

    Either way the whole situation makes me laugh.
    all the national pundits swore we would be moving on from Foles and any scrambling QB.
    Now we have four in camp.

    • Honest_T

      FWIW” I think Kinnie is a mobile QB. He also was brought in by CK.

  • EaglefaninAZ

    “Could Barkley still end up winning the backup job? Sure. But at this point, Sanchez is clearly the favorite.” Now wait a minute. This after Kelly just told you that’s not the case? What did I miss?

    • Andy124

      The part where we don’t believe everything a coach says… even Chip Kelly.

      • EaglefaninAZ

        But I wanna believe!! Lol… seriously though, I have my own theory on why he’s running with the twos right now. I think it’s because Barkley already has a year of this system under his belt, so to get Sanchez up to speed with the system, run him with the twos, which involves a lot more other guys that are also in their second year of said system.
        Now stop calling my coach a liar!

        • Andy124

          That seems like the opposite of what Kelly believes in. Teach the fastest and everybody else has to keep up. If you don’t know the system as well and you’re going to slow things down, you get less reps. See: rookies down on the depth chart to start and DJ being bumped to the 3rd team.

          I think there’re a few things that seem more likely to me.
          1) He’s not immune to contract politics
          2) He values NFL game experience more than we’d expect
          3) He doesn’t like what he sees from Barkley. Maybe he’s not so great in the class room, isn’t as hard a worker as Chip would like, or is just too blonde.

          • EaglefaninAZ

            Those are all valid points. I agree that any of the scenarios you mention could be the case.
            On a related note, since posting my original comment I’m starting to hear people saying Barkley’s performance in these workouts is looking a lot better than last year. Particularly mention were long throws down the field. I guess we’ll see.

            I’m not a huge Barkley nor Sanchez fan. I’m just hoping and confident that we’ll end up with the best #2 we have available.

  • Kev_H

    Barkley is the QB drafted by Kelly so he’ll be the man. That’s just something I read from experts this time a year ago.

  • Travis

    Chip and Howie must really like former USC QBs with shoulder problems….

  • James Hathaway

    I had the joy of attending the eagles academy for men this year, and in the locker room, I took a look at the players lockers.

    Most were stocked with supplements, vitamins, and other things that seemed to make sense being in a locker room.

    Not a joke , Mark Sanchez had several moisturizers, a pore cleanser, and several other beauty products.

    Cut him. Now.